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Navalny Arrest Imminent?

Russian anti-corruption activist and opposition leader Alexei Navalny is reportedly facing arrest on Monday for abusing his authority as a volunteer advisor to a regional governor.

The Independent said Navalny’s lawyers confirmed Russian media reports that Navlany will be charged Monday with extortion.

Navalny’s blog Live Journal is one of the most popular in Russia. His anti-graft site, RosPil, lets whistleblowers post entries about corruption in state contracts.

He was jailed for two weeks last year after he led street demonstrations against Vladimir Putin’s ruling United Russia party.

The investigation of Navalny began last year. He’s alleged to have used his volunteer government position four years ago to force a loss-making state timber company into an unfavorable deal.

The deputy governor of the Kirov region, Maria Gaidar, has called those allegations “complete nonsense.” Navalny said the allegations are falsified and fabricated.

Two years ago, Navalny, now 35, exposed an apparent $4 billion fraud at Russia’s state-owned pipeline company, Transneft, during the construction of the East Siberian Pacific Ocean pipeline.

Last week he leaked documents that allegedly showed foreign business investments by Alexander Bastrykin, the head of one Russia’s criminal enforcement agencies, the Investigative Committee.

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