OT Tokyo Police Accused of Erasing Tickets

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"Police Accused of Erasing Tickets

TOKYO (AP) -- Two police officers were arrested Sunday on suspicion of erasing traffic violation records, only weeks after a top official at the same department in northern Japan resigned amid allegations of lying and dereliction of duty.

The arrests follow a string of other scandals among Japanese police, including the use of amphetamines, sexual misconduct and hazing. The incidents have shaken public trust in the police and prompted Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi to criticize the nation's police force.

Superintendent and head of traffic operations Norio Osawa, 65, and assistant inspector Nozomu Sonehara, 50, of the Niigata prefectural (state) police, were arrested Sunday and fired on suspicion that they erased computer records in October of violations by a 45-year-old man, Niigata police said.

Police denied local news reports that Osawa is suspected of having received $940 in gift certificates from the man, saying neither officer had received money."


-- viewer (justp@ssing.by), March 19, 2000

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