Indonesia's parliament speaker denies corruption allegations

FILE - In this Monday, Dec. 7, 2015 file photo, Indonesian House Speaker Setya Novanto, center, leaves after attending the Parliament's Ethics Council

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — The speaker of Indonesia's parliament, once hailed by President Donald Trump as one of Indonesia's most powerful men, has denied any wrongdoing after being named a suspect in a corruption scandal in which officials allegedly pocketed more than $170 million of government money.

Setya Novanto told a televised news conference Tuesday there was no truth to the accusation he stole more than $40 million. He's staying as speaker.

He said "all allegations against me are not true."

The chief of the Corruption Eradication Commission, Agus Rahardjo, announced Monday it had gathered sufficient evidence to name Novanto a suspect.

Anti-corruption police allege about 80 people, mostly politicians, used the introduction of a $440 million electronic identity system in 2011 and 2012 to steal more than a third of the allotted funds.