Tag: Japanese Crime
The question of whether or not gambling is illegal in Japan is not black and white. Officially, most forms of gambling have been illegal in Japan for many years (refer to Chapter 23 of the Japanese Criminal Code for the exact wording of the law) – but there have been ways and means for thrill-seekers to get their (above board or otherwise) adrenaline fix in Japan since then. New laws passed in 2016 have indicated a bright future for potential casinos in Japan – though they have yet to officially open their doors.
Japan is regularly called one of the safest countries in the world, and for many years has had the low-crime rate to back that statement up. That’s not to say that crime does not exist there, but thousands of tourists visit each year and say the same things: they felt safe, the streets felt safe, and there seems to be much less crime than in their own country. Is Japan really as safe as they say? Are there parts of Japan that aren’t as safe as others? And what contributes to the strong sense of safety and security that people feel in the country?
Japan has one of the highest conviction rates in the world, coming in at roughly 99.9% (there is some debate on the exact numbers). Even if it is not exact, anything close to this figure is truly astronomical. There are a number of unique factors within the Japanese justice system that lead to this consistently high statistic.
There are many anecdotes about foreigners being treated unfairly by Japanese police. While undoubtedly some of these are true (after all, every country has some element of corruption) much of this so-called unfair treatment can be attributed to the dramatic differences in the Japanese law and justice system when compared to Western countries. A foreigner may be shocked at how strictly they are treated under Japanese law, but this is not necessarily because they are being discriminated against – it is because of the way the system works.
So what kind of behavior could get you into unexpected trouble on your Japanese odyssey? Let’s unpick some of the most commonly discussed weird laws in Japan – and find out which are true and which are simply urban legends.
Known as the Haitorei Edict, during the Meiji Period and Restoration (1868-1912), the social class known as samurai was abolished, banning non-government officials from carrying swords. A Sword Hunt followed leading to the confiscation of all weapons and swords in Japan by the government.
The 2019 Global Peace Index considers Japan as the ninth safest country in the world. This means that among 163 independent nations and territories all over the world, Japan has a relatively low rate for safety indicators like crimes, domestic conflicts, or tension among economic classes. However, the country is second in terms of natural Hazards.