Suriname's trade and industry minister has resigned after being accused of involvement in money laundering and participating in a criminal organization.
Siegfried Gilds announced his decision Thursday, telling reporters he wants to give authorities room to investigate the matter unhindered. Prosecutor-General Subhas Punwasi has confirmed an investigation is under way.
Local media reports say the case involves Gilds' link to a relative whom he had helped in starting a business. The relative was later prosecuted for drug trafficking.
Gilds served as minister of police and justice in Suriname from 2000 to 2005.
Suriname is a former Dutch colony on the northeastern shoulder of South America
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.