GOJ requires fingerprints and criminal history for long-term visas, yet refuses domestic means to produce them.


Hello Blog. As of April 2006, Japan is now requiring fingerprints and criminal records for long-term visas, yet now refusing to provide police cooperation in getting the former. US citizens, for example, are now told to give their fingerprints to the FBI and get a Rap Sheet–and pay for the privilege. Nice little money spinner for the USG on the behest of the GOJ, which requires compliance without domestic assistance. This is what people pay taxes for? Glad to be exempt. One more comment at the very bottom:

Courtesy USG newsletter to US expats abroad (forwarded me from two sources):

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Every so often we, at the Embassy and Consulates, receive requests from people who need a copy of their fingerprints to apply for a specialized license in the U.S. Recently we started receiving similar requests in relation to the extension of the long-term resident permit in Japan.

We verified with the Immigration Bureau of the Ministry of Justice that as of April 2006, foreign long-term residents must provide the Japanese authorities with a copy of their criminal history record to extend their visa. In order to obtain such a record, Americans have to provide the FBI with a copy of their fingerprints.

We used to refer such requests for fingerprints to the local Japanese police, but in most cases the police have stopped offering this service. Since the Embassy does not provide this service, Americans needing a copy of their fingerprints should follow the guidance listed online here.
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==========USG LINK EXCERPT BEGINS==============
An FBI Identification Record, often referred to as a Criminal History Record or Rap Sheet, is a listing of certain information taken from fingerprint submissions retained by the FBI in connection with arrests and, in some instances, federal employment, naturalization, or military service. If the fingerprints are related to an arrest, the Identification Record includes name of the agency that submitted the fingerprints to the FBI, the date of arrest, the arrest charge, and the disposition of the arrest, if known to the FBI. All arrest data included in an Identification Record is obtained from fingerprint submissions, disposition reports and other reports submitted by agencies having criminal justice responsibilities….

How to Request a Copy of Record

1. Complete cover letter. (click here)

If for a couple, family, etc., all persons must sign cover letter
Include your complete mailing address
If you have a deadline (e.g., an immigration deadline), please include the deadline in your cover letter and on the outside of the envelope.
2. Obtain proof of identity, which consists of a set of your fingerprints
(original card, no copies), with your name, date of birth and place of
birth. Fingerprints should be placed on a standard fingerprint form
(FD-258) commonly used for applicant or law enforcement purposes.

Include rolled impressions of all ten fingerprints and impressions of all ten fingerprints taken simultaneously (these are sometimes referred to as plain or flat impressions.)

If possible have your fingerprints taken by a fingerprinting technician (this service may be available at a Law Enforcement Agency.)

Previously processed fingerprint cards will not be accepted.
3. Include $ 18 – U.S. dollars in the form of a money order, certified check
made payable to the Treasury of the United States, or you may pay by
credit card

Be sure to sign where required
No personal checks or cash
Must be exact amount
If for a couple, family, etc., include $18 for each person
If paying by credit card you must include the completed credit card payment form
Credit cards will not be used for expedited mail services
4. Mail the items #1, #2, #3 (listed above) to the following address:

FBI CJIS Division – Record Request
1000 Custer Hollow Road
Clarksburg, West Virginia 26306
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COMMENT: As I said, nice little money-spinner here. Really nice how governments are in the habit of requiring you have certain documentation and then charge you for it. Only this time, it’s technically being done at the behest of the Japanese Government because they can’t be bothered.

Also like how your behavior in Japan alone is no longer a factor in whether or not you can get a long-term visa. You must also have had your nose clean abroad too. You people who had bad childhoods–growing up and reforming yourself makes no difference. You still can’t become a Permanent Resident in Japan anymore. Presidents with colored pasts (Alberto Fujimori and Bush II) had better not emigrate either.


1 comment on “GOJ requires fingerprints and criminal history for long-term visas, yet refuses domestic means to produce them.

  • Eleanor Goldsmith says:

    That seems utterly daft. The local police in Niigata were as helpful as anything when we needed copies of our prints in order to obtain our Japanese rap sheet when applying for permanent residence in NZ. You’d expect them to be even more helpful if it was in order to comply with their own government’s requirements. Then again, maybe the Niigata police were just happy to see fewer two foreigners in the prefecture…

    Good to see you’re still going strong, Debito. Keep up the good work.


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