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Marine master sergeant arrested at airport in Japan, faces year in prison over accident

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Master Sgt. Christopher Oletski (LinkedIn)

A US Marine could be looking at some serious time in a Japanese prison after a stray rifle round was found inside his bag at Naha Airport in Okinawa.

37-year-old Master Sgt. Christopher Oletski fell prey to Japan’s strict weapons laws on Monday morning after a cartridge was discovered inside his bag.

Oletski admitted he likely did not notice the round in his bag, which likely made its way into the luggage during the course of his duties.

Released on Tuesday, he is being charged with violating Japan’s Explosives Control Act, potentially facing a year of imprisonment or as much as $4,456.59 (500,000 yen) in fines.

A Tomigusuku Police spokesman told Stars and Stripes that this kind of thing happens far too often, particularly with servicemembers who travel frequently.

“We cannot stress enough to please check all your pockets and compartments in your luggage before departing your home,” the police spokesman said. “You are in Japan, and Japan has much more strict rules than your country.”

It is unknown what action the US Marine Corps will take.

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