MOSCOW -- A Moscow court has sanctioned the arrest of the interior minister of Russia's Republic of Buryatia, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.
Viktor Syusyura and a former associate, Andrei Shurupov, were detained in the Buryat capital, Ulan-Ude, on October 17 and brought to Lefortovo prison in Moscow the next day.
A spokesperson for the Investigative Committee of the Prosecutor-General's Office, Vladimir Markin, told journalists that Syusyura and Shurupov would be formally charged with involvement in smuggling, but did not provide any other information.
Syusyura was appointed interior minister in March 2006. Before that, he was the chief of Azov-Black Sea transport police in Russia's Krasnodar region.