Japanese Employee Robs His Boss and Squanders the Money at a Casino

May 22nd, 2019 2.00pm

The lights of Crown Melbourne Casino burnt too bright for Takur Yanagida, who, blinded by the glitz and glamour of the extravagant gambling lifestyle in Victoria’s capital, dared to perform an unspeakable act – ravage his boss’ briefcase and spend every last dime at the casino tables…

Shredding to pieces the cultural stereotype about the Japanese sense of duty and business ethics, Yanagida (23), stole $140K from his employer and went on a gambling rampage. The incident took place while the boss was asleep, blissfully unaware of his employee’s criminal activities.

“Naïve, Amateurish, and Unsophisticated Act”

As it turns out, Yanagida’s actions were not a part of an elaborate scheme – quite the contrary. The clumsy manner in which “the heist” was conducted is not really an indicator of a shrewd criminal mind. The punishment definitely fits the crime in this case – the judge sent the perpetrator to prison, calling his deed “naïve, amateurish, and unsophisticated”. In other words, Yanagida was grounded and sent to his room to think about the consequences of his actions.

The fact that Yanagida took no precautions to cover his tracks has given a humoresque element to the entire affair. Sadly, Yanagida’s boss is not likely to find comic relief in this unfortunate episode. Thanks to his employee’s reckless behaviour, his business endeavours in Australia have suffered a severe impact, which will probably make him oblivious to any silver linings, such as finding humour in his demise.

The Easy Way Out…

Upon arriving at the Crown Melbourne Casino, Yanagida used his boss’ membership card and passport to purchase chips, starting a chain of events that would eventually lead to his imprisonment and Gohsuke Kotani’s (Yanagida’s boss) financial ruin.

The reason behind Yanagida’s decision to betray Kotani’s confidence was quite simple – he needed the money to repay his debts. According to the court documents, the plan was to double the cash and start with a clean slate after returning $20,000 he had previously borrowed from none else than Kotani. Ironically, Kotani had lent him the money to cover gambling losses that Yanagida had suffered during his stay in Korea.

After what the judge called opportunistic and panic-driven impulse, Yanagida returned to his hotel room empty-handed, having lost all of the money playing blackjack and slots. A couple of hours later, Kotani reported the robbery and the guilt-stricken man had no other recourse than to confess, especially after the Crown Melbourne Casino staff identified him.

Judge Shows Leniance

Lachlan Cameron, Yanagida’s defence lawyer stated that the entire scheme was doomed from the get-go. There was a surprising lack of attempt to conceal his wrongdoing, which is probably one of the reasons judge Robert Dyer went easy on the offender.

The young man’s despair along with the reasons that triggered the incident convinced judge Dyer that Yanagida’s remorse was genuine. The sentence was, therefore, comparatively mild and Yanagida will soon be deported back to Japan after serving 207 days out of the 8-month sentence.

“Your offending may have been initiated by a naïve belief that you could use Mr Kontani’s money to win at the casino and pay off your financial situation”, said the Judge during the sentencing.

As a result of the recent events that led to the imprisonment of his protégé, Mr Kotani lost the ability to trust his employees.

Still, one cannot help but express an utmost admiration for Yanagida’s remarkable restraint and the discipline he displayed while rummaging through Kotani’s suitcase. Despite the fact that he actually found $300,000 inside the briefcase, Yanagida settled for only 50% – most people would not be able to resist the temptation of taking everything.



Crown Melbourne Casino