The Prosecutor-General's Office today said Mayor Nikolai Utkin was detained on May 1 together with an aide on charges of receiving almost $1 million as part of a multimillion-dollar bribe.
Utkin allegedly demanded the money from a private firm in a real-estate deal.
"We have set up an investigating group to look into this criminal case," Samara Oblast Prosecutor Yury Denisov told journalists today. "The group consists of investigators from the department for especially grave crimes of the Samara regional prosecutor's office and investigators from the Samara regional branch of the Federal Security Service."
Utkin's arrest comes amid Kremlin efforts to crack down on corruption and consolidate federal control of Russia's provinces.
(AP, Interfax, ITAR-TASS)
Citizens of Russia's Urals region protest against alleged corruption in connection with a proposed smelting plant on Lake Shartash (TASS)
'A NATIONAL THREAT': Russian President Vladimir Putin highlighted the crippling problem of corruption during his annual address to the Federal Assembly in May. He emphasized the damaging impact of corruption on the country's economy and pledged to rid Russia once and for all of a "serious obstacle" ...(more)