Detained Belarusian Investigator Hospitalized

MINSK -- A jailed senior state prosecutor who was investigating corruption among State Security Committee (KGB) officials has been sent to a KGB hospital for an examination, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports.

Svyatlana Baykova was arrested five months ago while investigating corruption among high-ranking KGB personnel. She has been held in pretrial detention in Minsk since March.

Mikhail Vouchak, Baykova's lawyer, told journalists today that she was suffering from kidney failure and her condition is "critical." Baykova was on a hunger strike for several days in June.

Vouchak said he hopes that after the medical examination Baykova will either be transferred to a public hospital or released on bail.

He also said that he has written to the prosecutor-general and KGB chairman urging them to release Baykova from detention pending completion of the investigation against her.

Baykova, who is officially charged with abuse of office, is known for her earlier probes of corruption among police officers.

In 2000, she began investigating the disappearance of former Interior Minister Yury Zaharanka. She was taken off that case in 2002.

Zaharanka's whereabouts remain unknown more than a decade after he vanished.


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