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Guinean ex-ministers held in corruption crackdown

CONAKRY (AFP) – Two former ministers in the West African state of Guinea are being held under an anti-corruption drive launched by the military junta, one of their lawyers said.

Former security minister Albert Damantang Camara under ousted president Alpha Conde, and ex-housing minister Ibrahima Kourouma were ordered on Thursday to be held in custody by a special court for financial crimes, he said.

A former economy minister under Conde, Mamadi Camara, has also been formally placed under judicial investigation, said the attorney, Amara Bangoura.

They were questioned on Wednesday and Thursday by investigators for the CRIEF special court set up by the junta which toppled Conde last September.

They are being prosecuted for “embezzlement and complicity in embezzlement of public funds, illicit self-enrichment, corruption and laundering”, Bangoura told AFP.

The move marks a further escalation of an anti-graft crackdown launched by former special forces commander Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who heads the ruling junta.

Others in detention are former prime minister Ibrahima Kassory Fofana; former defence minister Mohamed Diane; former environment minister Oye Guilavogui; and former oil and gas minister Zakaria Coulibaly. They were ordered held on April 6.