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East Japan teacher caught on hidden camera pinching cash from colleagues

Utsunomiya city hall is seen in this Feb. 21, 2019 file photo. (Mainichi/Keina Hagihara)

UTSUNOMIYA -- A 24-year-old elementary school teacher in this city north of Tokyo is in hot water after being caught stealing a total of about 90,000 yen ($822) from coworkers' wallets.

According to the Utsunomiya Municipal Board of Education, the teacher lifted the bills from three of her colleagues' wallets a total of nine times between early October and early November. The victims had left their wallets in the staff locker room or faculty room. The education board is considering disciplinary measures.

The larcenous instructor was collared after one of her victims, noticing cash was missing, mounted a miniature camera inside their changeroom locker. The camera captured the thief in action, and she was identified by her clothes and other features.

The woman has apparently admitted to the thefts, and was quoted as telling education board investigators that she was "having money trouble."

Two of the staff who had money stolen have filed damages complaints with Tochigi Prefectural Police.

(Japanese original by Keina Hagihara, Utsunomiya Bureau)

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