King of Dumplings boss Takayuki Ohigashi shot dead; yakuza suspected

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 19 December, 2013, 11:29pm
UPDATED : Friday, 20 December, 2013, 2:18am


The boss of a well-known dumpling restaurant chain was shot dead yesterday in the ancient Japanese city of Kyoto, a hotbed of the country's yakuza mobsters.

Takayuki Ohigashi, 72, was found bleeding and unconscious in a car park in front of the company's headquarters at about 7am, the Ohsho Food Service company said.

He was later confirmed dead at hospital, a spokesman for the company said.

He was bleeding from three wounds to his torso and spent cartridges were left at the site, suggesting he had been shot multiple times, a local rescuer and media reports said.

"Police will soon set up a special investigative team as we believe it was a murder case," said a local police officer.

Ohigashi was president of the Gyoza no Ohsho (King of Dumplings) chain, which runs more than 650 restaurants in Japan and a handful abroad.

"He is not the type of person who would make enemies or incur resentment from people," company spokesman Koji Uchida said.

Ohigashi was reputed to be a popular businessman who turned around the once-struggling restaurant chain.

"He would come to work early and clean the entrance of the headquarters building himself every morning," Uchida said, referring to a practice among some senior businessmen who want to show camaraderie with their staff in status-conscious Japan.

Ohigashi began serving as president of Ohsho in 2000, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The company had more than 8,191 employees as of March, according to the data. Ohsho opened its first outlet in Kyoto in 1967.

Additional reporting by Bloomberg