BOGOTA, Colombia – Venezuela's socialist government has seized nearly 4 million toys from a private company and says it will hand them out as Christmas gifts to poor children this holiday season.
The country's fair pricing authority seized the toys Friday from three warehouses run by Kreisel, Venezuela's largest toy distributor. Two company executives were detained on suspicion of promoting price speculation.
Agency director William Contreras alleged that Kreisel underreported its inventory in order to sell some toys at higher prices. Kreisel has not commented officially beyond responding to Twitter messages of support.
Authorities said local supply committees will be in charge of distributing the toys "fairly" to children.
Venezuela has been wracked by a deep economic crisis accompanied by shortages of goods ranging from food staples to medicine.