Former Malawian President Bakili Muluzi appeared in court Thursday after being arrested and charged with 86 counts of corruption.
The Malawian government's Anti-Corruption Bureau says Mr. Muluzi stole more than $10 million in aid money from donors including Taiwan and Libya.
The French news agency (AFP) says the former president said little during the court hearing in the commercial capital Blantyre. He was later released on bail.
Mr. Muluzi is planning to run for president in May on the ticket of the opposition United Democratic Front party.
Earlier Thursday, his supporters cheered as he arrived at the Anti-Corruption Bureau's office in Blantyre.
Mr. Muluzi served as Malawi's president from 1994 to 2004. He was forced to step down after an unsuccessful bid to amend the constitution so he could run for a third term.
In 2008, Malawian authorities detained him and put him under house arrest for allegedly plotting to overthrow his successor, President Bingu wa Mutharika.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Bloomberg.