A 46-year-old man was arrested Friday in connection with the murder of a Vietnamese girl whose body was found last month near a drainage ditch in Chiba Prefecture, investigative sources said.

Yasumasa Shibuya, who claims to work in the property leasing business, was arrested for allegedly abandoning the 9-year-old victim's body. His DNA matched a sample police collected at the crime scene, the sources said.

In a shocking revelation, the local education board revealed that Shibuya headed the parents' association of the girl's elementary school. Residents said he took turns with other parents to act as crossing guards, watching over roads in school zones to protect the children.