Japanese Yakuza Members Wanted for Murder in Thailand, Flee to Laos

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Japanese Yakuza Members Wanted for Murder in Thailand, Flee to Laos
Information about the Japanese offenders, a Thai accomplice, and the victim released by Nonthaburi Provincial Police (photo: MGROnline)

Thai authorities are in pursuit of two Japanese nationals believed to be members of a prominent yakuza gang in Japan. Their involvement in the murder and dismemberment of a fellow Japanese man in Nonthaburi province, Thailand, has prompted a joint effort between Thai and Laotian officials to secure their extradition after they fled to Laos.

The discovery of human remains began when a 10-year-old Thai boy stumbled upon a human wrist on 19 April, discarded amidst the abandoned lands of Soi Jadsan Swing 2 on Ban Kluay-Sai Noi Road in the Bang Bua Thong district of Nonthaburi Province, Thailand, near Bangkok.

The victim, identified as a 47-year-old Japanese man, Kabashima Ryosuke, was reportedly murdered for violating the rules of the yakuza gang to which he and his assailants belonged.

After an investigation, Thai authorities arrested a Thai suspect, 30-year-old Kritsakorn “Game” Jaiphitak 22 April, who confessed to assisting the two Japanese suspects, 50-year-old Kato Takuya and 28-year-old Suzuki Hiroto, in disposing of the victim’s remains but denied involvement in the actual murder. 

According to Thai media reports, the two Japanese criminals allegedly coerced Game into helping them dispose of the body parts by threatening him into compliance.

Game recalled driving the two perpetrators and the victim to a warehouse in Nonthaburi province on 28 March, where the Japanese men instructed him to park the car and step away. As he moved aside to smoke a cigarette, he heard the sound of gunshots. Game then observed the two Japanese men brutally murdered the victim and proceeded to dismember his body. Subsequently, they placed the body parts into black rubbish bags and ordered him to dispose of the remains at the desolate, abandoned land nearby.

In order to escape the legal punishment, the two Japanese suspects crossed into Laos from Thailand via the border with a boat in Nakhon Phanom province, as reported by Thairath on 26 April. They are believed to be hiding in the Thakhek District of Khammouane province. Thai authorities are currently working with Lao officials to arrange for their extradition back to Thailand to face justice.

Both Takuya and Hiroto are wanted by Japanese authorities and are reportedly high-ranking members of a leading yakuza gang in Japan. According to Thaiger, the two men ran illegal businesses in Thailand for an extended period.