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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Kudrin Meets Storchak in Lefortovo

Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin has met with his deputy Sergei Storchak, charged with attempting to embezzle $43 million, for the first time since Storchak's arrest, his ministry said Friday.

Kudrin met with Storchak for two hours at the Lefortovo pretrial detention facility and "discussed issues related to the competence of the Finance Ministry," Itar-Tass reported.

The Storchak case has been politically damaging for Kudrin, the deputy prime minister in overall charge of the economy, as Kremlin factions vie for influence ahead of an election in March for the successor to President Vladimir Putin.

Storchak, the country's foreign debt negotiator who also oversaw the $144 billion stabilization fund, has been charged in relation to a failed attempt to recover a debt owed by Algeria. He faces up to 10 years in jail if convicted.

Reuters, MT