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Iran first VP charged with corruption

Iranian prosecutors have charged First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi with embezzling money, judiciary spokesperson Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi announced Monday. The spokesperson said he expects the case to go to trial [AP report]. Conservative lawmakers say they have strong evidence linking Rahimi [Haaretz report] with corruption. Rahimi has previously denied lawmakers' corruption accusations and threatened to sue his accusers.

In June, an Iranian lawmaker claimed there was $14 billion worth of corruption [Persian2English report] in the government of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [BBC profile; JURIST news archive]. In 2009, Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [BBC profile] criticized Ahmadinejad [Guardian report] after the president attempted to distance his regime from previous regimes that he hinted were corrupt. In 2008, an Ahmadinejad associate in Parliament accused members of Iran's judiciary [Times report] of being corrupt.

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