Yomiuri Paper: 2ch Forum Owned by Shell Company

posted on 2012-03-27 00:00 EDT by Ko Ransom
Newspaper: Singaporean firm "Packet Monster" has no substantial employees or operations

In an investigatory piece that the Yomiuri Shimbun paper published on Tuesday, the newspaper reports that the current owner of the 2channel (2ch) message board, a Singaporean company named Packet Monster Inc., is a shell company with no substantial employees or operations.

Ownership of the message board, which is hosted in the United States, was formally transferred to Packet Monster in 2009 by website founder and former administrator Hiroyuki Nishimura. Nishimura now holds the position of Director at Niwango, the company responsible for operating the video streaming service Nico Nico Douga.

According to Yomiuri, the Singaporean location where Packet Monster states it is located is actually a "virtual office" operated by the Singaporean company Rikvin, and that a woman at the building's reception desk stated, "This is Packet Monster's office, but they have no employees." The investigation also found that the woman listed as the company's official "company secretary" is also a Rikvin employee. When asked, she stated that she acts in that role for over 2,000 companies.

The company's only director, Effendy Ahamed Harith Merican, claimed that he took the role when asked to by a man known as "Koriyoshi" who was introduced to him by a friend. Effendy added that his only role is to sign papers that arrive from Rikvin. Effendy, who is reportedly listed as a director for over 200 companies, also stated that he did not know Japanese, and therefore ignores any letters or forms sent to him in Japanese. When asked, he said that he had never heard of a message board called 2channel.

The Yomiuri article also stated that police have identified the men who initiated contact with Rikvin and Effendy, and plan to investigate the company's financial layout and situation. Earlier in March, the Metropolitan Police Department searched 10 locations related to the message board after it failed to delete a message posted last year by a man trying to sell stimulant drugs and syringes.

2channel was created in 1999 as a forum in where users could anonymously write about their views on various topics.

[Via 2 no matome]

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