- any of various tightly knit Japanese criminal organizations having a ritualistic, strict code of honor.
- such organizations collectively.
- a member of such an organization; gangster.
Origin of yakuza
Examples from the Web for yakuza
Contemporary Examples of yakuza
The Japanese judges have established that yakuza bosses have “employer liability” for the actions of their subordinates.The Case of the Yakking Yakuza
September 16, 2014
The yakuza were traditionally federations of gamblers (bakuto) and street merchants (tekiya).
Japanese law enforcement uses all the laws available to crack down on the yakuza.
According to the National Police Agency, yakuza membership peaked in 1963, at approximately 184,100 members.
In Kyushu, where the yakuza are deeply rooted, they are not leaving with a whimper, they are leaving with a bang.
- the yakuza a Japanese criminal organization involved in illegal gambling, extortion, gun-running, etc
- a member of this organization
Word Origin for yakuza
traditional Japanese organized crime cartel, literally "eight-nine-three" (ya, ku, sa) the losing hand in the traditional baccarat-like Japanese card game Oicho-Kabu. The notion may be "good for nothing," or "bad luck" (such as that suffered by someone who runs afoul of them), or it may be a reference to the fact that a player who draws this hand requires great skill to win.