Behind the bright neon lights and polite way of life in Japan, exists a network of organised crime syndicates deeply entrenched in the country’s history.
Known as yakuza, this Japanese mafia was once seen as helping to police the criminal underworld, but more recently has been linked to extortion, drug trafficking and deadly gangland feuds.
Now the authorities are fighting back, with new laws forbidding people and businesses from dealing with the yakuza.
But can it really put a stop to this billion dollar criminal business?
Chan Tau Chou gets a rare insight into the workings of the yakuza, its hold in Japanese society, and the desire of some to stay on the right side of the law.
WATCH - Apologies, but this video is no longer available for copyright reasons. You can however see the original version of the story on Al Jazeera's website.
On air: 18th September 2012