• Kyodo

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An elementary school teacher in Hyuga, Miyazaki Prefecture, has been arrested for allegedly falsely claiming to a newspaper reporter that he had found a silver-crowned tooth in a rice ball he bought at a convenience store and after the paper ran the story.

The Miyazaki Prefectural Police arrested Akira Kuroki, 46, on Sunday on suspicion of discrediting the store.

According to the police, Kuroki invited a Mainichi Shimbun reporter to his house Feb. 25 and made the false statement, which was reported in the newspaper the following morning.

Kuroki also made a similar statement to Hyuga Police Station over the phone, but officers determined that it was he who had inserted the filling in the rice ball. It was a metal filling that had been used to treat his own tooth.

Kuroki first told the officers the filling was not his but later said he would apologize if they confirmed otherwise.

The Mainichi Shimbun’s headquarters for west Japan, in Kitakyushu, issued a statement saying that despite careful news-gathering, new facts became clear concerning its reporting. It apologized for the trouble and said it will be more careful in future reporting.

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