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Romanian intelligence official suspended amid inquiry

Associated Press logo Associated Press 12/01/2017

BUCHAREST, Romania — A senior Romanian intelligence official has been suspended after a businessman indicted on wide-ranging corruption charges claimed he had a close relationship with the officer.

Florin Coldea, the No. 2 at Romania's Intelligence Service, was removed from his post Thursday after the agency announced it was investigating his conduct to determine whether he had broken any laws or rules.

In recent days, businessman Sebastian Ghita has boasted in footage broadcast on a private TV channel that he vacationed with Coldea and his family in the Seychelles, Italy and Paris, providing photos to support his claims.

Officials have issued an arrest warrant for Ghita, who illegally left Romania after he was charged with bribery, blackmail and money laundering.

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