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Slovakia: Lexa Returns To Face Charges

Bratislava, 18 July 2002 (RFE/RL) -- The former chief of Slovakia's SIS intelligence service has been brought back to Bratislava after two years on the run from charges of abuse of power and corruption. A plane carrying Ivan Lexa landed in the Slovak capital this afternoon. He was immediately taken into custody.

Lexa was arrested in South Africa on 14 July. He is an ally of former Slovak Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar. Slovak police have been hunting Lexa on suspicion that he managed a defamation campaign against Meciar's main rival, former President Michal Kovac. He is also suspected of involvement in the kidnapping of Kovac's son in August 1995.