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2004 saw 488 police officers and police employees disciplined for misbehavior, up 13 percent from the previous year.

The National Police Agency said Thursday that of the total, 71 were disciplined for damaging their professional integrity due to drinking or sexual relations, 70 for theft, embezzlement or fraud, and 67 for traffic accidents or traffic violations.

It said 106 police employees were disciplined for budget misappropriations in the Hokkaido, Shizuoka and Fukuoka prefectural forces. The personnel allegedly used local police budgets for informants, funds for meals at meetings and night duties, as well as incentive money for officers.

By prefecture, Hokkaido had the largest number of personnel disciplined, at 100, followed by Hyogo with 37, including members of a traffic unit who committed document forgery.

Thirty-six Metropolitan Police Department employees were disciplined, it said.

Of the 488, 36 were fired and 70 others were suspended, while 242 had their pay cut and 140 received warnings.

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