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The head of a consumer rights organization told a Diet committee Thursday that his group has received about 500 complaints each year since 1992 over the operations of Amway Japan Ltd., a member-based distribution company that makes sales but has no stores.

Shogo Oikawa, head of Kokumin Seikatsu (People’s Life) Center, told the Lower House special committee on consumer problems that his group fields more than 1,000 inquiries each year about Amway, about half of which are complaints. Half the inquiries received come from relatives of the sales personnel, he said.

Last year, the center received a total of more than 1,500 inquiries, Oikawa said. Tamotsu Tokunaga, an official of the Education Ministry, told the committee that eight schoolteachers have been reprimanded and another dismissed after becoming Amway sales representatives because as public servants they are restricted from holding additional jobs.

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