Hisayuki Machii


Hisayuki Machii

Hisayuki Machii (町井 久之 "Machii Hisayuki"; 1923 - September 14, 2002) , AKA the "Ginza Tiger" or "Ginja Horangi" (긴자 호랑이) (銀座の虎 Ginza-no-Tora), was the founder of one of Japan's most notorious yakuza gangs, the Tosei-Kai (東声会).

A Korean, Machii was born Jeong Geon Yeong (정건영/鄭 建永) in 1923 when Korea was under Japanese occupation. After World War II, Machii settled in Tokyo and became involved in postwar Japan's thriving black market. By 1948, he had formed his own gang, the Tosei-kai or "Voice of the East Gang" which grew to over 1,500 members by the early 1960s.

Like fellow Yakuza powerbroker Yoshio Kodama, Machii had good relations with the US occupation authorities due to his staunch anti-Communist stance. Tosei-kai soldiers were often used as strikebreakers during the occupation years.

By 1965, increasing police pressure led Machii to disband the Tosei-kai. But in their place, he formed two "legitimate" front organizations, the Toa Yuai Jigyo Kumiai (東亜友愛事業組合 East Asia Friendship Enterprises Association) and the Toa Sogo Kigyo (東亜相互企業 East Asia Enterprises Company), which was headed by Kodama.

The Toa Yuai Jigyo Kumiai, commonly known as the Toa-kai, is still an active Yakuza gang in Japan with an estimated membership of 1,000. The group is still comprised of mostly ethnic Koreans, Machii having paved the way for Korean involvement in the Japanese underworld. Machii himself retired in the 1980s.


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