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Former Lithuanian Minister Arrested in Corruption Probe


A former Lithuanian minister wanted in an anti-corruption probe has been arrested in the capital, Vilnius, after returning home from Moscow.

Russian-born millionaire Viktor Uspaskikh fled Lithuania in 2006, after investigators raided his Labor Party offices in Vilnius and seized financial records and computer files.

Uspaskikh, who led his newly-created Labor Party to victory in 2004, was wanted on suspicion of mismanaging party funds and filing what authorities said were misleading tax documents. He has repeatedly denied the charges and says he has become the target of a political vendetta.

Authorities offered no immediate explanation for Uspaskikh's return to Lithuania. However, the former economy minister is listed as a candidate for a vacant parliamentary seat in the southern part of the country. Polls are set for October 7.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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