Yakuza (ヤクザ), also known as gokudō, are members of traditional organized crime syndicates in Japan. The Japanese police call them bōryokudan (暴力団), literally "violence group", while the yakuza call themselves "ninkyō dantai" (任侠団体 (or 仁侠団体), "chivalrous organizations").
Yakuza was named after the worst gambling hand, ya (8), ku (9) and za (3).
|Created in 1915, the Yamaguchi-gumi is the biggest yakuza family, 45% of all yakuza in Japan, with more than 45,000 members divided into 750 clans. Despite more than one decade of police repression, the Yamaguchi-gumi has continued to grow. From its headquarters in Kobe, it directs criminal activities throughout Japan. It is also involved in operations in Asia and the United States. Shinobu Tsukasa, also known as Kenichi Shinoda, is the Yamaguchi-gumi's current Oyabun. He follows an expansionist policy, and has increased operations in Tokyo (which has not traditionally been the territory of the Yamaguchi-gumi.)|