Richie Bartlett

Free feel-ups from people in uniform…
Just one of the many “perks” that comes with living in one of the most foreigner “friendly” countries in the world - Japan!

Stop and shoo: Shokumu shitsumon, or "stop and frisk," is a tried and tested tactic among Japanese police. | KYODO

Legal hurdles are high when it comes to seeking redress

Foreign Tokyo resident “P” writes:

On a recent Sunday at 6:25 p.m. in Roppongi, I was stopped by two police officers for apparently no reason in a clear case of racial discrimination. After showing my ID, the police gave me no explanation relating to any criminal act they suspected me of, and they harassed me.

More on Japan Times…

Arudou Debito

A police officer is able to ask for a person’s ID, but only if based on a reasonable (gouriteki) judgment of a situation where the policeman sees some strange conduct and some crime is being committed, or else he has enough reason to suspect that a person will commit or has committed a crime, or else it has been acknowledged that a particular person knows a crime will be committed. In these cases a police officer may stop a person for questioning.

Richie Bartlett

Actually, the practice is slightly different… Especially if you are NOT a Japanese National.
In short, the police are permitted to:
  1. stop a person for questioning, and, if they try to escape, to seize them (although the officers are not allowed to restrain or arrest them).
  2. question them (although they have no obligation to answer these questions).
  3. request (but not force) them to accompany the officers to a nearby police station or police box for the questioning.
  4. frisk them with or without consent. (This is not written in the act, but precedents have established this. Basically, the frisking is limited to patting down over their clothing.)