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Macedonia Police Issue Arrest Warrant For Former PM Gruevski

Former Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski arrives at court in Skopje on October 5.

Macedonian police have issued an arrest warrant for former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, who has been convicted and sentenced to a two-year prison term on corruption-related charges.

Interior Ministry spokesman Toni Angelovski said the warrant for Gruevski's arrest was issued November 12 following court instructions.

Judges on November 9 rejected Gruevski's final appeal against his serving the sentence.

The former leader of the conservative main opposition party VMRO-DPMNE was sentenced in May to two years in prison for unlawfully influencing Interior Ministry officials over the purchase of a luxury vehicle at an estimated cost of 600,000 euros ($674,500).

Court clerks have tried in vain to locate Gruevski and personally serve him the order to present himself at the prison.

Gruevski, 48, was prime minister from 2006-2016. He is the former leader of the main opposition conservative VMRO-DPMNE party, which claims he is being politically persecuted.

He is still facing three other corruption trials, including over a major wiretapping scandal, and could be handed longer sentences than the one already given to him.

With reporting by AP