The FBI today was rounding up known and suspected members of the toughest alien Japanese group in San Francisco.
The raids were said to have been based on documentary evidence seized in previous raids on Japanese secret societies, that the local group was a front for the ruthless and dread Black Dragon Society, most nationalistic and terroristic of all Japanese secret bodies.
Nat J.L. Pieper, Northern California FBI chief who directed the roundups, said some of the Japanese already in custody had admitted the secret nature of the local society. Mr. Pieper also declared proof of the organizations intense nationalistic program, and direction under the Black Dragon Society, has been found.
Japanese gambling clubs here and in Los Angeles apparently were used to disguise the real purpose of their operators which reportedly was to inform the Japanese people of their national heritage and rights to dominate the world, and to conceive a counter movement to rectify any and all projects detrimental to Japan.
Gamblers and their gun-toting bodyguards spread the policies of the Black Dragon Society into California. If the full story of the organizations activities were known, there is strong suspicion it might show that some Japanese gambling killings in California were due to more than mere disputes over gambling debts.
Among those arrested here were Saima Yoshimura, reputedly a gambler and operator of the former Yamato Club in the Japanese colony here, and Kyashi Uyeda, who acted as his bodyguard. Uyeda is believed the same K. Uyeda who was released from San Quentin in 1940 after serving five years for killings at the Tokio Club, supposedly the secret groups rendezvous in Los Angeles.
Another gambler, Mojiro Tanioka, was seized. Raiding officers found two gambling tables set up for operations when they entered his place at 1725 Sutter-st. Also taken into custody was K. Inouye, Japanese movie distributor, who was said to have admitted he had paid dues to the secret group.
The San Francisco News
March 31, 1942
Go to the Japanese Internment page.