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Slovakia: Ex-SIS Chief Arrested In South Africa

Bratislava, 16 July 2002 (RFE/RL) -- A former Slovak counterintelligence chief, accused of masterminding the abduction of the president's son, has been arrested in South Africa after years on the run. The Slovak Justice Ministry said yesterday that Ivan Lexa was caught on 15 July traveling with a false passport in South Africa and will be extradited to Bratislava as soon as possible.

Lexa, head of the Slovak Information Service (SIS) under former Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar, fled the country after release from jail in 1998. An international arrest warrant was issued. He faces numerous charges, including masterminding the abduction of then-President Michal Kovac's son in 1995.