- Series Information
- The Oxford Handbook of Organized Crime
- List of Contributors
- Organized Crime: A Contested Concept
- Theoretical Perspectives on Organized Crime
- Searching for Organized Crime in History
- How to Research Organized Crime
- The Italian Mafia
- The Italian-American Mafia
- the Russian Mafia: Rise and Extinction
- Organized Crime in Colombia: The Actors Running the Illegal Drug Industry
- Mexican Drug “Cartels”
- Chinese Organized Crime
- The Japanese Yakuza
- Nigerian Criminal Organizations
- Gangs Another Form of Organized Crime?
- Opportunistic Structures of Organized Crime
- Organizing Crime: The State as Agent
- The Social Embeddedness of Organized Crime
- Protection and Extortion
- Drug Markets and Organized Crime
- Human Smuggling, Human Trafficking, and Exploitation in the Sex Industry
- Illegal Gambling
- Money Laundering
- Arms Trafficking
- Organized Fraud
- The Illegal Exploitation of Natural Resources
- Organized Crime Control in the United States of America
- U.S. Organized Crime Control Policies Exported Abroad
- European Union Organized Crime Control Policies
- The Fight Against the Italian Mafia
- Organized Crime Control in Australia and New Zealand
- Organized Crime “Control” in Asia: Experiences from India, China, and the Golden Triangle
- Finance-Oriented Strategies of Organized Crime Control
Abstract and Keywords
This essay gives an empirical overview of the main trends in the business activities, organizational structures, and inter- and intragroup relationships of Japanese organized crime (essentially monopolized by groups known collectively as yakuza) over the late 20th and early 21st centuries. It argues that the main drivers of yakuza evolution throughout this period have been economic market opportunities and the legal environment in which these groups operate. Over recent decades more effective law-enforcement has encouraged yakuza diversification into a wide range of business activities on both sides of the law. While the yakuza remain surprisingly visible in comparison to equivalent groups in other modern industrial democracies, they are steadily adopting a lower profile. They remain, however, a significant and pernicious presence within the Japanese economy.
Peter B. E. Hill is at University of Oxford.
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