The Bamboo Union is the country's biggest organized crime group, with 68 branches and 1,171 known members -- or more than one out of five of the nation's known gangsters -- according to recently compiled police statistics.
\nAfter the Bamboo Union, the Four Seas Gang is the next-largest, with 46 local branches and 726 members. The Tiendaomeng is the third-largest, with 36 branches and 632 members.
\nThe police explained that the numbers represent only those known gang members who are listed as followed or monitored by officers, so the numbers understate the real amount of gangsters in the country.
\n"There must be more of them in the shadows," a senior officer with the National Police Agency said.
\nThe same statistics also showed that of the roughly 5,300 total known gangsters in the country, 2,119 live in Taipei City, 736 live in Taipei County, 639 live in Taoyuan County, 418 live in Keelung City, 338 live in Taichung City, 288 live in Changhua County, 211 live in Hsinchu City, 208 live in Kaohsiung City and 204 in Kaohsiung County. In addition to these metropolitan areas, the rest of counties or cities have fewer than 200 known gangsters.
\nThe Bamboo Union was established in 1957. Through government crackdowns on gangs, the union lost more and more members.
\nPolice forced its former leader, Chen Chi-li (
1. Bamboo Union, 1, 171 members and 68 branches. Established in 1957.
2. Four Seas Gang, 726 members and 46 local branches. Established in 1955.
3. Tiendaomeng, 632 members and 36 branches. First police records of gang, 1986.
Where the gangsters are:
1. Taipei City: 2,119
2. Taipei County: 736
3. Taoyuan County: 639
4. Keelung City: 418
5. Taichung City: 338
6. Changhua County: 288
7. Hsinchu City: 211
8. Kaohsiung City: 208
9. Kaohsiung County: 204
Source: National Police Agency
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