According to a book recently published by Tomohiko Suzuki, a freelance journalist who went undercover as a laborer at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant for two months this year, people who were unable to repay loans from yakuza gangs were forced to work at the site as a means of repaying their debts. Tokyo Electric issued a refutal, calling the claim that organized crime would be allowed to influence the recruitment process “groundless”.

With the assistance of a particular organization, Suzuki was able to get employment at Fukushima Daiichi during July and August of this year, until his identity was discovered. In the book detailing that time, he writes, “The yakuza has a huge influence on the running of the nuclear power plant. About one in ten laborers is aligned with the criminal organizations in some way.”

In their published denial, Tokyo Electric’s PR department stated, “Our company denies any influence from these antisocial organizations, and it is clear that staffing agencies used to recruit laborers have complied with all laws and acted appropriately.”