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Former Liberia interim president charged with corruption

[JURIST] Charges have been brought against former interim president of Liberia [JURIST news archive] Gyude Bryant [BBC profile] for embezzling $1.3 million during his tenure from October 2003 until January 2006, according to a Liberia government statement Tuesday. The indictment was based on an audit conducted by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) [official website], which monitored the interim government after former President Charles Taylor [JURIST news archive] stepped down in August 2003. Taylor is currently awaiting trial [JURIST report] at The Hague before judges of the Special Court for Sierra Leone [official website] on crimes against humanity charges.

On Monday, current Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf [BBC profile] announced the government's plans to prosecute all present and former government officials involved in corruption. In December, two former finance ministers and a former minister of commerce were charged with corruption; however, the men were subsequently freed. Bryant has denied the charges against him and is expected to face trial in an intermediate court in Monrovia. AFP has more. AllAfrica.com has additional coverage.

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