The head of Konnech Corporation, an election software company used in Johnson County Kansas and across the nation, was arrested on Oct. 4 in Los Angeles for stealing poll worker data and allegedly storing it on Communist Chinese data servers.
The arrest comes just days after the New York Times reported on the company, saying “election-deniers” were attacking it.
Now, Konnech’s CEO Eugene Yu, 51, has been arrested on charges of stealing “the personal identifying information” of LA County election workers, according to the LA County District Attorney’s Office. Authorities also say Konnech may have stored sensitive data on Chinese servers owned, in part, by the CCP.
Investigators also seized computer hard drives and other digital data relevant to the case. The office said that it would seek Yu’s extradition to Los Angeles.
The company’s PollChief software manages election workers and is used by Johnson County Elections officials. According to Kansas City KCTV-5, the Johnson County Manager’s office said in a statement, “We learned tonight that the Los Angeles County District Attorney arrested a Konnech Corporation executive as part of an investigation into possible theft of personal identifying information of election workers. Konnech distributes and sells the PollChief software. The Johnson County Elections Office uses PollChief as our election worker management system. We are aware of this issue and are investigating the impact, if any, on data relating to election workers in Johnson County. We will continue to share information as we learn more.”
Konnech won a five-year, $2.9 million contract with LA County in 2020 for an election worker management system—named PollChief software—that was used by the county in the last California election.
The software was designed to assist with poll worker assignments, communications, and payroll, LA County District Attorney George Gascon said in a statement.
Under the contract, Konnech was supposed to securely maintain the data and only provide access to U.S. citizens and permanent residents. But investigators found that it stored the data on servers in China.
“In this case, the alleged conduct had no impact on the tabulation of votes and did not alter election results,” Gascon said. “But security in all aspects of any election is essential so that we all have full faith in the integrity of the election process.”
The New York Times reported on Oct. 3 that Konnech had become the target of “election deniers” who claimed the company had given China access to the personal data of 2 million poll workers in the United States. The newspaper downplayed the claims at the time and again used the term “election-deniers” in its brief story on the arrest.
Yu’s arrest came weeks after Konnech filed a lawsuit against True the Vote, a non-profit vote-monitoring organization in Texas, on Sept. 12 for making “false and racist accusations” against the company.
True the Vote lauded LA County’s “rapid action” in the case and said that Konnech had obtained an emergency temporary restraining order (TRO) to limit the organization’s ability to speak on the litigation.
“True the Vote was sued last month by Konnech to try to silence our organization, including obtaining an ex-parte TRO, conducted in secret so that True the Vote had no opportunity to contest it,” it said in a statement.
“Today Konnech CEO Eugene Yu was arrested based on alleged evidence of the very activities he and his organization attempted to suppress,” the organization added.
–Metro Voice and wire services