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Fukushima Pref. worker who sexually harassed co-worker as 'joke' suspended for 3 months

This file photo shows the Fukushima Prefectural Government headquarters (Mainichi/Motoyori Arakawa)

FUKUSHIMA -- A Fukushima Prefectural Government worker who repeatedly sexually harassed a female worker, saying he thought she "could take a joke," has been slapped with a three-month suspension.

The prefectural government announced the suspension of the worker, who is in his 20s, on March 25.

According to the prefectural government, the worker who had been dispatched to an outpost in the northeastern Japan prefecture's Minamiaizu region, hugged the woman and touched her chest on the rooftop of their workplace at lunchtime on two days in early December last year. From that point until Dec. 19, he then reportedly touched her on practically a daily basis in their office.

The worker's actions were uncovered after she approached her boss about it. The male worker was quoted as saying, "I intended it to be a joke. I thought she was someone who could take a joke."

In a separate case involving the Fukushima Prefectural Government, a male worker in his 40s, was handed a one-month pay cut on March 25, after police caught him driving 42 kilometers per hour over the speed limit in the city of Fukushima in November last year.

(Japanese original by Hideyuki Kakinuma, Fukushima Bureau)

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