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December 10, 2018

At least 13 arrested in crackdown on illegal alcohol dealers in Nairobi

Some of the alcohol impunded during a raid targeting illegal alcohol distlillers in Nairobi's Mowlem area on Wednesday, June 13, 2018. /COURTESY
Some of the alcohol impunded during a raid targeting illegal alcohol distlillers in Nairobi's Mowlem area on Wednesday, June 13, 2018. /COURTESY

Liquor Licensing Board officials on Wednesday raided illegal distilleries and impounded contraband liquor in Mowlem and Eastleigh.

During the crackdown, a number of importers of wine and spirits, among them Lyniber Supplies Limited, were found trading in violation of the law.

At least 13 suspects were arrested and will be arraigned on Thursday to answer various charges related to illegal sale of alcohol.

Among them was the owner of Starbase Entetrprises - a distributor at Kayole Spine Road, for operating without the requisite licenses.

Residents of Nasra had complained about the businessman selling Keg near residential dwelling.

"Majority of operators had not met the minimum requirements of licensing and had liquor and health regulations," Mutungi said. 

During the raid, the authorities said they discovered that the companies were trading without the Kenya Bureau of Standards mark of quality.

City Hall officials closed Lyniber Supplies Limited plant located in Mowlem, Embakasi West constituency .

Lyniber Supplies Limited produces spirits that are distributed in Mt Kenya and Lower Eastern regions.

Read: State misses point in war on illicit brews

"Residents are warned against consuming drinks manufactured by Lyniber Supplies Limited," board chairman Kennedy Odhiambo said.

During the operation, Odhiambo and the team confronted a Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) officer who had authenticated the illicit liquor for distribution.

"As you have witnessed, the KRA officer has authenticated the illicit spirits and issued the original stickers," Odhiambo said.

He added that they also discovered that most entertainment joints are selling adulterated drinks.

Read: One arrested as KRA nabs counterfiet goods worth Sh1.2 million in Nairobi

Inspection Committee chairman Mutunga Mutungi said the owner of the manufacturing plant was operating without liquor licences.

They arrested the laboratory technician and six employees who were manually cleaning the recycled bottles.

Some of the distributors were also reprimnded for flouting public health provisions, liquor laws, and operating without a licence.

At one of the premises off Likoni Road, an employee of the company was arrested for physically placing KRA stickers on the purported imported drinks.

"They are supposed to store the wines and spirits in a customised warehouse where KRA officials inspect. Where do they get this KRA stamps from?" Mutungi asked.

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