Police searched shop in September after complaints that it was near store for teenaged girls
Tokyo Metropolitan Police formally charged the 60-year-old male executive of legal affairs for the secondhand otaku retail chain Mandarake on Friday with violating the Businesses Affecting Public Morals Regulation Law. The charge alleges that the retail chain operated a store that displayed a large amount of adult entertainment in a prohibited area. The company admitted to the charge, saying “It was foolish to think that we could operate a store like that even after being warned by the police.”
The shop in question was the “Banned Publications” store that only recently opened at the Nakano Broadway complex in Tokyo on August 28. The new shop was only one of many Mandarake stores in the complex, but it attracted public attention soon after its opening. “Spank!” is a fashion and clothing store catering to teenage girls, and the “Banned Publications” store opened directly across a narrow 1.95-meter (about 6.4-foot) hallway from the fashion store. The fashion store’s staff said that they could not reopen business due to the presence of the adult store. The Twitter post and the shop itself became a topic in social media in the following days.
The 12-square-meter (about 130-square-foot) “Banned Publications” store was the only adult shop out of the 30 shops that Mandarake operates within Nakano Broadway. However, the Metropolitan Police’s Safety Division did not deal with the other shops and dealt with the “Banned Publications” store on its own. The Division ultimately cited the fact that the adult store was operating near a hospital, which made the area prohibited for such businesses under the Businesses Affecting Public Morals Regulation Law.
Police already warned the store on or after September 2, but the store continued to operate. The police searched the premises of the store on September 15, prompting its temporary closure.
Mandarake has shops on multiple floors in Nakano Broadway, and is widely known among otaku as a destination for various goods, merchandise, production material, vintage animation cels, cosplay material, and other collectibles. The chain’s “Banned Publications” store was its newest addition to Nakano Broadway.
Update: According to The Sankei News, the police specifically charged the Mandarake executive for operating an adult shop within 200 meters (about 700 feet) of a hospital. An internal medicine clinic and two dental clinics are among the tenants on Nakano Broadway’s fourth floor, where the “Banned Publications” store was located.
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