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Venezuelan who was arrested at JKIA with election materials released

A foreigner who was arrested at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) on Thursday evening after he was found with election materials has been released.

In a statement on Friday morning, the National Police Service said Comarco Gregoria, a Venezuelan national, was released from lawful custody and the election stickers he had have been handed to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.

Police spokesperson Mr Bruno Shioso confirmed that indeed the foreigner who had landed in the country was arrested and put under lawful custody as investigations into the matter went on.

“The arrest and subsequent investigations into the material was necessitated by the sensitivity of elections material, and further, by other aspects leading to his release,” Mr Shioso said in the statement.

He said that the said the stickers which belong to IEBC were not declared by law and that there was no official from the electoral body who had accompanied Mr Gregoria to the airport as should be the norm.

According to the police spokesperson, officers at the airport found it strange that such crucial materials were carried in a luggage that belongs to a foreigner.

Mr Shioso said that the drama at the airport leading to the arrest of the foreigner caused by the fact that officers were not informed of such an import in order to provide security and other necessary action.

He said that investigations carried out by sleuths attached to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) proved that indeed the election material belonged to IEBC.

Immediately the foreigner was nabbed he was taken to the JKIA police station for questioning and his luggage searched.

However, IEBC faulted the state for the arrest of Mr Gregoria and two other people who they said are employees of Smartmatic International B.V, a firm contracted to deploy technology during the upcoming polls.

The electoral agency chairperson Mr Wafula Chebukati said that the three were arrested under unclear circumstances and without any consultations.