Burakumin are a group that is socially discriminated against in Japanese society. The burakumin are descendants of outcast communities of the feudal era, mainly those with occupations considered tainted with death or ritual impurity, such as butchers, executioners, undertakers or leather workers. They traditionally lived in their own secluded hamlets and ghettos. Discrimination against the Burakumin continues into the present day, a legacy of the Japanese feudal/caste system.
According to David E. Kaplan and Alec Dubro, burakumin account for about 70 percent of the members of Yamaguchi-gumi, the largest Yakuza syndicate in Japan.
Mitsuhiro Suganuma, ex-officer of the Public Security Intelligence Agency, testified that burakumin account for about 60 percent of the members of the entire Yakuza.