A Guangdong policeman has allegedly amassed several million dollars in debt because of losses from online gambling.
The case is another blow to the reputation of the province's police following the Dongguan sex trade scandal.
Ling Ziqun, who heads the bureau responsible for forestry crime in the city of Qingyuan , was accused by a guarantor of owing the money to another man after losing several million yuan on a soccer website.
Ling confirmed the allegations but said he had borrowed the money to pay off debts his wife incurred from a scrap metal business.
Public servants are banned from gambling or managing businesses, and the party's municipal discipline inspection committee said it had handed the matter over to police.
The guarantor told a television news programme he had been Ling's friend for 30 years. He said Ling had lost 800,000 yuan (HK$1 million) betting on soccer in a single week in September. He later lost a further 2 million yuan and had to borrow more than 1 million yuan from a banker.
The guarantor and the banker had gone to Ling's office and made him sign three notes acknowledging the debt. The banker then forced the guarantor to sign the documents.
When Ling failed to pay the debt, the banker sued him and the court froze the guarantor's property and bank accounts.
The Southern Daily quoted Ling as saying he owed about 3 million yuan.
Provincial police have been under fire for their involvement in Dongguan's sex trade, which was raided last week.