Yakuza 6 Actor Linked to Real Organized Crime
Fans that have been playing Sega’s popular Yakuza series over the years are certainly no strangers to depictions of crime. Indeed, many players have been following Kazuma Kiryu‘s forays in criminality since 2005. That said, real world criminal activity is something different entirely, and a recent report indicates that an actor from Yakuza 6: The Song of Life has found himself in some trouble due to an apparently accidental connection to organized crime.
As reported by the Japan Times, Hiroyuki Miyasako, a comedian and the actor behind Tsuyoshi Nagumo in Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, has recently been suspended from Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., a major Japanese talent agency. Miyasako was not the only one to receive such a suspension though, as 10 other comedians were also suspended, all for participating in “underground business.”
The “underground business” in question is having attended a party “hosted by a purported organized crime group without consulting with the company,” and it is said that the comedians received payment for their attendance. It is further stated that this party occurred approximately five years ago and that the hosts “were allegedly involved in money transfer fraud.”
Yoshimoto Kogyo has indicated that the comedians were unaware that they were attending “a gathering hosted by an antisocial group,” but the company still considers it “a very serious matter that they accepted money from such a group.” Miyasako has since issued an apology, saying, “I deeply regret accepting the money, even if it was indirectly.”
Things do not end with Miyasako’s suspension though, as broadcasters have chosen to remove him, and the other suspended comedians, from any programming that they might be featured in. This type of response certainly has precedent within Japan, and, in fact, similar situations have arisen around the Yakuza series before.
Most recently, for example, the arrest of actor Peter Taki led Sega to temporarily halt the sale of Judgement, a Yakuza spin-off that Takai was featured in. Ultimately, Taki’s portrayal was removed from Judgement, with another actor filling in, and it certainly seems possible that the developer could take similar action when it comes to Miyasako’s role in Yakuza 6.
Yakuza 6: The Song of Life is out now for PS4.