In the bustling cities of East Asia, an alarming trend has emerged, shedding light on the dark underbelly of sexual violence against women. The BBC World Service’s investigative unit, BBC Eye, embarked on a year-long investigation to uncover the shocking reality of women being groped on trains and the subsequent sale of assault videos online. This exposé reveals the extent of this heinous crime and the individuals profiting from the exploitation of victims.

The Epidemic in Japan

Normalization and Underreporting

The prevalence of sexual assault, termed “Chikan” in Japan, has become alarmingly normalized, particularly within the adult entertainment industry. Chikan, referring to sexual assault in public spaces, thrives on crowded trains where perpetrators take advantage of victims’ fears and societal norms that discourage open confrontation. Despite thousands of annual arrests, only about 10% of victims report the crime, highlighting the pervasive issue and societal challenges surrounding reporting.

Unveiling the Online Marketplace

DingBuZhu: A Hub for Exploitation

One disturbing revelation from the investigation is the existence of a Chinese-language website named DingBuZhu, meaning “I can’t hold it.” This platform serves as a marketplace for Chikan videos filmed in crowded public places across East Asia. The videos, often priced at less than a dollar, showcase the disturbing reality of assault and contribute to the perpetuation of this crime. DingBuZhu also allowed users to order tailor-made abuse videos, further emphasizing the sinister nature of this underground trade.

“Uncle Qi” and the Web of Exploitation

Within the Chikan websites, a mysterious figure named “Uncle Qi” emerged as a central character. Hailed as a guru, Uncle Qi not only created abusive videos but also garnered a significant following on social media platforms. The investigation uncovered the true identity of Uncle Qi – Tang Zhuoran, a 30-year-old Chinese-born singer living in Tokyo. Tang Zhuoran, frontman of a metal band called The Versus, was exposed as a key player in the online exploitation of women.

The Chikan Club: Legalizing Fantasy

Rush Hour and Legalized Assault

In the red-light district of Yokohama, a sex club named Rush Hour provides a legal outlet for individuals to act out their Chikan fantasies. The club’s manager, Hasuda Shuhei, defends its existence, claiming it prevents real-world sexual assaults. However, mental health professionals argue that Chikan perpetrators are driven by the desire for domination and humiliation, challenging the claimed benefits of such establishments.

Unmasking “Uncle Qi” – Tang Zhuoran’s Web of Exploitation

Maomi’s Business Model

Tang Zhuoran, alias “Maomi,” revealed the inner workings of his operation during an undercover meeting. He not only confessed to being “Uncle Qi” but also managed a team of 15 individuals, producing over 100 videos monthly. The videos, sold on three websites, amassed over 10,000 paying members, predominantly Chinese men. Maomi unabashedly discussed training others to carry out and film sexual assaults, highlighting the disturbing lack of empathy toward the victims.

The Unraveling of Maomi

Despite Maomi’s cautious approach, the investigation led to the revelation of his real identity – Tang Zhuoran. In a twist of fate, Maomi’s attempt to cover his tracks failed when he inadvertently exposed his real name. Confronted with the allegations, Tang Zhuoran reacted violently, further underscoring the lack of remorse or concern for the victims.


The investigation into the world of Chikan assault videos in East Asia exposes a disturbing reality. From the normalization of sexual assault to the online marketplace and legalized fantasies, this comprehensive report sheds light on the individuals perpetuating these crimes. Tang Zhuoran’s unmasking as “Uncle Qi” emphasizes the need for stringent measures and legal reforms to combat this pervasive issue. As Japan contemplates reforms to sexual assault laws, the fight against Chikan must extend beyond legal changes to societal awareness and cultural shifts. The victims, like Takako, deserve justice, and society must stand united against the exploitation of women.

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