YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Armenia’s state investigative agency has accused the nation’s former president of embezzlement — charges he dismisses as political.
The Special Investigation Service said Wednesday that Serzh Sargsyan, Armenia’s president for a decade from 2008, is suspected of involvement in the embezzlement of over $1 million of state funds allocated to provide subsidized fuel to farmers.
The investigators requested Sargsyan not to leave the Armenian capital pending the probe. Under Armenian law, he faces up to eight years in prison if convicted.
Sargsyan has rejected the accusations as a political vendetta, according to a statement released by his office.
Sargsyan shifted into the prime minister’s seat in 2018 after two terms as president but was forced out weeks later by protesters led by Nikol Pashinian, who later replaced him.