Crime Prevention - 11. "This is a crime!" | Lectures for Foreign Students on Disaster Control | JPSS, the information site of studying in Japan

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"This is a crime!"

You could become a criminal if you pick up an unattended bicycle from the dump, which looks of use, to your home. It's no worth asking: "What is bad about picking up something in the dump?"

Sometimes, you could violate a law without knowing you are. Your behavior could lead to an unexpected result. Once breaking the law, there is no room left for excuse by saying that you didn't know.

What for example are the things you may do without knowing it to be a crime?

- To take things with you that are in the dump
If you pick up things, especially something valuable such as TV, bicycle or electric devices etc, it is considered to be the Embezzlement.
- To throw things away without permission
There is also a rule when throwing things away (Waste Disposal and Public Cleaning Law). It is a violation of law not to throw things away in a fixed place in a told way. For example, to throw away bicycle, refrigerator or TV on the riverside or in the mountain, or to throw away garbage from individual's home such as PET bottles, on the street or in a open public space, you'll be fined.
- Riding a bicycle after drinking, or while holding an umbrella or talking on the phone
You are not allowed to ride a bicycle after drinking any alcohol. The penalty is a five-year imprisonment or a fine below one million yen. In addition, in Tokyo the Road Traffic Act was revised and riding a bicycle while holding an umbrella or using the cell phone has become a prohibition. To violate this, you'll be fined below fifty thousand yen.
- Reselling the tickets
It is prohibited, under the Ordinance to Prevent Public Nuisances, to buy tickets such as concert or admission ticket with the aim of reselling. Recently it has become easy to resell them via internet, but it is important to know that it's prohibited. For example, to buy tickets with the aim of reselling them at internet auction at a higher price, or to resell the tickets purchased at internet auction are considered to be violation of law (Secondhand Articles Dealer Act).
- To earn money at internet auction
What you need to be aware of when using the internet auction is that to use it for business purposes you need the business license as an "antique dealer". You'll not be in trouble when you put up at auction your personal belongings that you don't use any more. However, if you wish to earn money by putting up necklaces, bought cheap in your country for auction, is considered to be a business, which requires you to have the license.
- Illegal copy, illegal upload
It is illegal to put copyrighted software or video on the internet in a condition that everyone is able to download. In addition, to put a copyrighted image such as character of any animation on your homepage without permission, or to write the lyrics of a popular song on your blog, both are illegal. (However it becomes a crime only after the owner of the copyright accuses the user).
- Selling your own cell phone or buying someone's phone
To sell, without letting know the cell phone company, the cell phone under your name to others, or to buy one under someone's name are both prohibited (Act for Identification etc. by Mobile Voice Communications Carriers of their Subscribers etc, and for Prevention of Importer Use of Mobile Voice Communication Services). In addition, to make a contract using a false name, address or birthday also is a crime.
- Using the commuter's ticket of your friend
When using the train, you may not use the commuter's ticket of your friend. It is the violation of the Railway Operation Act, you'll be fined and the ticket will be confiscated. Not only commuter's ticket but also free passes for weekend or on a railroad are prohibited to be shared among friends. However, commuter's ticket without specifying the owner such as that of the bus, anyone who has the ticket may use it.


- Don't take things lightly
All kind of crime and violation of laws are caused from a little looseness such as; "this can't be a problem", "this can't come out" or "everyone is doing the same". This looseness could throw out your life plan and you'll regret having done such things.
- Don't be too stingy
Sometimes you'll commit an error by being stingy and thinking "is there any way without paying money?" A little "savings" such as thinking; it's a waste of money, it's ok to use the one of your friend, someone will give you or it's easier to make a copy will make you to be fined heavily and to be a criminal.
- Be vigilant and look for information
There are cases that you are taking part of a crime without noticing it. To guard someone's baggage at the airport or recently it is common a type of fraud called "re-shipping" which makes you the receiver of a good that was bought with a illegal credit card. Checking the news everyday, reading newspapers, to communicate with your neighbors and to attend the activity at your district are good ways to catch the latest information about the society.


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