Ex-president of Maldives arrested

A court in the Maldives has ordered the country's former president be arrested on money laundering charges.

The Associated Press reports that Yameen Abdul Gayoom was ordered detained by a court after prosecutors argued that he could potentially tamper with witnesses in the case if released.

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Investigators reportedly found $1 million in his bank account related to a deal to lease public islands to real estate developers. Two current Cabinet ministers were also suspended by the Maldives' current president, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, after related payments were discovered in their accounts.

A state prosecutor argued, according to the AP, that Yameen had contacted two witnesses in the case offering money in exchange for their silence.

Yameen has reportedly countered that he does not know the witnesses set to testify against him and that he did not know about the $1 million transferred to his account.

Former President Mohamed Nasheed, whose conviction under Yameen's rule was overturned last year, told the AP that the country will attempt to reduce its $3 billion debt with China, arguing that some of the money went to Yameen's illegal schemes.