Band blunderer relieved
The leader of a police band that performed the Republic of China's national anthem at the inauguration of a Beijing-financed stadium has been temporarily relieved of his music duties, an official said on Tuesday. Inspector Bryan Hurst will not lead the Royal Grenada Police Band while investigators determine how his ensemble came to play Taiwan's anthem instead of its rival to open the US$40 million Queen's Park stadium on Saturday. Police Commissioner Winston James was expected to formally apologize to Chinese Ambassador Qian Hongshan (錢洪山).
Tired man steals police car
A man told police he stole a patrol car that had been left idling outside a post office in Gunma, north of Tokyo, because he was too tired to walk home. Police officers had left the vehicle in the car park with the engine running, while they investigated a report that a stolen card had been used at the post office, the Mainichi Shimbun said on Tuesday. "I came out shopping by train, but I got tired walking, so I thought I would drive the police car home," the man told police. He was apprehended about 15 minutes later in the driveway of a private home, about 4km from the post office.
Teacher nabbed over photos
An elementary-school teacher was arrested in Tokyo yesterday for allegedly distributing photographs of naked children, reportedly including some killed in traffic accidents. Toshio Watanabe, a 33-year-old teacher, allegedly sent photos of naked boys by e-mail to a man who visited his Web site and a 16-year-old student. Jiji Press said Watanabe had maintained a Web site with photos of naked children, including some who were killed in traffic accidents, natural disasters and wars.
He faces up to three years in prison and a ¥3 million (US$25,000) fine if convicted.
End to child labor urged
Some 1.5 million children aged sseven to 17 years old are being put to work in the kingdom, the World Bank said yesterday, calling on the government to curb the practice. The number is "very high," making up 40 percent of children in the age group, the bank said in a report titled Children's Work in Cambodia: A Challenge for Growth and Poverty Reduction, that was dated last December. "This percentage is very high relative to other countries with similar levels of income, underscoring that children's work poses a particular concern in the Cambodian context," the report said.
Hospital attacked after death
Hundreds of people attacked a hospital in Leiyang, Hunan Province, after the wife of the local tax bureau chief died there following surgery, sparking an online debate about abuse of authority. The woman died on Saturday from multiple organ failure four days after under-going liposuction surgery, reports on Web sites said. Friends and relatives began gathering at the hospital that after-noon, blaming the staff for the woman's death and demanding more than 1 million yuan (US$128,000) in compensation. Over the next few days, the crowd smashed the hospital's doors and windows, drove patients and staff out, and beat at least one person who showed up seeking treatment. According to the Boxun news Web site, the clinic where the woman underwent surgery was simply renting space from the hospital and its main doctor had no training in plastic surgery.