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Uzbek Official Who Played Role In Karimova Case Charged With Corruption

Gulnara Karimova, daughter of Uzbek President Islam Karimov
Gulnara Karimova, daughter of Uzbek President Islam Karimov

TASHKENT -- The Uzbek official responsible for confiscating the assets of disgraced presidential daughter Gulnara Karimova has been charged with corruption and abuse of office.

Jahangir Ghulomov, the former chief of the Justice Ministry's department tasked with implementing court decisions, was detained in Kazakhstan and extradited to Uzbekistan in April, according to sources within the Justice Ministry and Prosecutor-General's Office.

The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Ghulomov, 43, is currently being held at a detention center in the southern city of Termiz.

It is not known precisely what the charges against Ghulomov pertain to.

Ghulomov along with a relative, Javdat Sharifhojaev, a former senior officer with Uzbekistan's National Security Committee, played key roles in the dismantling of Karimova's business empire after she was embroiled in a corruption scandal in 2013.

The ensuing investigation into her business activities led to the closure of her media empire in Uzbekistan, including several television channels, and the seizure of Tashkent boutiques believed to belong to her or her business partners.

The 42-year-old Karimova, once seen as a possible successor to her father, President Islam Karimov, has been under house arrest since 2014 and continues to be investigated on corruption and other charges.

In July, Uzbek authorities handed down prison terms to several alleged associates of Karimova after finding them guilty of financial crimes.

Both Ghulomov and Sharifhojaev were involved in the confiscation of Karimova's property and assets, as well as those of the alleged associates.

In December, Sharifhojaev was found guilty of corruption and abuse of power and sentenced to four years in prison. It is not known if the charges against him were in any way related to his involvement in the Karimova case.