Iran first vice president to stand trial for corruption

December 20, 2010 19:13

TEHERAN, Iran — Iran's first vice president is facing corruption charges and will have to stand trial, the judiciary said Monday.

Conservative lawmakers have openly accused First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi of financial corruption in recent months, but this was the first confirmation of charges against him. Rahimi has denied the charges and threatened to sue his accusers.The case is the latest jolt at the highest levels of Iran's government. In a separate development last week, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad fired his foreign minister and appointed the country's nuclear chief in his place without explaining the reasons for the abrupt change.

Iran has 12 vice presidents but Rahimi is the most senior among them. Judiciary spokesman Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi was quoted by the semi-official ISNA news agency as saying he will have to stand trial.

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