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Top Russian Investigator Furious At Navalny Probe's Closure

Aleksei Navalny speaks to the media outside the Federal Investigation Commission building in Moscow in June.
Russia's chief investigator has lashed out at regional subordinates for closing a probe into the activities of a prominent opposition leader without informing Moscow.

Aleksander Bastrykin, the head of the Investigative Committee, accused investigators in the Kirov region of closing a probe against anticorruption blogger Aleksei Navalny "on the sly" and ordered a review of the case in Moscow.

Investigators were probing reports that Navalny alleged embezzled funds from a state-owned timber company in the Kirov region, causing it one million rubles ($30,800) in damages.

Navalny, who has become an opposition icon since street protests broke out after parliamentary elections in December and a presidential vote in March, rejects the accusations.

Based on reporting by AP, Interfax, and ITAR-TASS