The Maritime Self-Defense Force on Wednesday punished a senior officer who is alleged to have paid for sex with about 30 minors over the past eight years.
A lieutenant commander in his 30s who belongs to the education division of the Maritime Staff Office was suspended from duty for 12 months for paying ¥30,000 to an underage woman for sex in Kitakyushu in June last year, the MSDF said.
The MSDF took the disciplinary action after local police referred him to prosecutors on Nov. 20 in an ongoing investigation into child prostitution in the city.
The officer was aware that the girl he got to know through social media was under 18 years old.
He had sex with her at a Kitakyushu hotel, according to the MSDF.
The MSDF also said it dismissed a petty officer belonging to the Maritime Staff Office for stealing ¥10,000 each from two colleagues around July this year. He is set to be referred to prosecutors.
Yuichiro Toi, chief of the office’s public affairs department, called the two cases “extremely regrettable.”