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Former Kazakh Agriculture Deputy Jailed For Corruption

A former deputy agriculture minister in Kazakhstan, Muslim Omiraev, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison on corruption charges.

A court in Astana convicted Omiraev of accepting a $100 thousand bribe from a businessman and sentenced him the on same day, October 16.

Omiraev, who was arrested last December, went on trial in September. He pleaded not guilty.

Kazakh Agriculture Minister Asylzhan Mamytbekov said earlier that he would step down if his former deputy was found guilty.

Several former Kazakh officials have faced prosecution on suspicion of graft in the past two years.

Some of them have been sentenced to long prison terms.

In July, the chief of Kazakhstan's state agency on the regulation of monopolies, Murat Ospanov, was arrested on suspicion of accepting a $200,000 bribe.

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