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Revisiting 'Tokyo Underworld,' book that lifted lid on crime in Japan

With a TV series in prospect, its author reflects on how lawbreaking has changed

Three yakuza in Tokyo's Kabukicho entertainment and red-light district in 1971. (Katsumi Watanabe)

More than two decades ago I published a book called "Tokyo Underworld." It sold 50,000 copies in hardcover and paperback in the U.S. and to date has been optioned for production into a film or TV series by five different studios -- including, as of February, Legendary. It was published in Japan in translation and hit the No. 1 spot on many lists.

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