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Two Kazakhs Arrested For Arranging Travel Documents For Fugitive Banker

Fugitive Kazakh banker Mukhtar Ablyazov
ATYRAU, Kazakhstan -- A court in Kazakhstan's western city of Atyrau on October 11 has sanctioned the two-month arrest of two local residents suspected of illegally arranging travel documents for a fugitive banker and his relatives.

A spokesman for Atyrau's regional court told RFE/RL that a local migration police official and a businessman were arrested on suspicion of bribing the passport-issuing agency in exchange for travel documents for banker Mukhtar Ablyazov and his relatives.

Ablyazov, a leading opponent of President Nursultan Nazarbaev, fled Kazakhstan in 2009 after Kazakh authorities seized control of his BTA bank.

Ablyazov's current whereabouts are unknown.

Kazakh authorities say he is wanted for allegedly embezzling at least $5 billion from his former bank.
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