Spain arrests Ukraine's ex-finance minister

4th March 2015, Comments 0 comments

Spanish police on Wednesday detained Ukraine's former finance minister Yuri Kolobov who is wanted by Kiev on charges of embezzlement and financial wrongdoing, a police source said.

The 41-year-old, who served under ousted pro-Kremlin president Viktor Yanukovych, was arrested in Altea, a hilltop village on the Mediterranean coast, the source said.

According to an arrest warrant issued by Interpol, Kolobov is wanted for misappropriation and embezzlement.

Kolobov, a former deputy head of Ukraine's central bank, was appointed finance minister in 2012 by Yanukovych, who was toppled in February 2014.

Yanukovych fled to Russia after months of protests in Kiev against his decision to back away from an EU association deal and instead seek close ties with Ukraine's former masters in Moscow.

The current pro-Western leaders accuse Yanukovych and a coterie of relatives and close allies, including Kolobov, of accumulating huge wealth by robbing state coffers and plundering national assets through corrupt deals.

Yanukovych has denied that he or members of his family were involved in corruption.

Kolobov is the first former minister of Yanukovych's government to be arrested.

© 2015 AFP

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