'Bolivia arrests ex-min under Morales for corruption'

Bolivia arrests ex-minister under Evo Morales for corruption: Prosecutor

Former Bolivia president Evo Morales. (Reuters Photo)

Bolivia on Tuesday arrested a powerful ex-minister under former president Evo Morales on suspicion of corruption, prosecutors said.

The detainee is Carlos Romero, the former interior minister who was close to Morales, who resigned in November amid protests over a disputed election and fled the country.

A conservative interim government has taken over ahead of presidential voting in May, and several ministers under Morales' leftist government have been charged or are under investigation and have sought refuge in the Mexican embassy.

Romero, 53, has been arrested over alleged misuse of funds in a government agency tasked with fighting drug trafficking, the prosecutors said.

Romero will now go before a judge who will determine whether to keep him in custody, release him with charges or place him under house arrest, the prosecutors said.

From his exile in Argentina, Morales defended Romero.

Morales said the government of acting president Jeanine Anez "does not want justice but rather revenge and impunity." 

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