Thursday, July 5, 2007

Dead Kids

Teacher avoids prison for Internet crimes

A fired Tokyo elementary school teacher was given a suspended 2 1/2-year prison term and ordered placed under supervision Thursday for the unauthorized posting of photos of five children who died in traffic accidents on his Web site and e-mailing child pornographic materials.

Although Toshio Watanabe, 34, was only charged with copyright violations and with circulating child-pornography materials, the case has caught public attention because it cast light on growing public misgivings over elementary school education, centering on whether such a person should ever be allowed to teach.

Watanabe was fired in March from Shorin Elementary School in a western Tokyo suburb after posting the photos on his Web site Club Kids.

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