AP NEWS

Former Salvadoran congressman arrested on arrival from US

January 9, 2020 GMT
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former Salvadoran congressman Roberto Silva Pereira arrives at the Judicial Center of San Salvador, El Salvador, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. Silva Pereira who was a congressman from El Salvador's conservative National Conciliation Party was arrested Wednesday following his deportation from the United States, where he fled in 2007. He allegedly bribed local officials to grant unfair contracts to front companies. (AP Photo/Salvador Melendez)
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former Salvadoran congressman Roberto Silva Pereira arrives at the Judicial Center of San Salvador, El Salvador, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. Silva Pereira who was a congressman from El Salvador's conservative National Conciliation Party was arrested Wednesday following his deportation from the United States, where he fled in 2007. He allegedly bribed local officials to grant unfair contracts to front companies. (AP Photo/Salvador Melendez)

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — A former Salvadoran congressman was arrested Wednesday following his deportation from the United States, where he fled in 2007.

Roberto Silva Pereira was a congressman from El Salvador’s conservative National Conciliation Party who was stripped of his immunity from prosecution but fled before facing charges of bribery and money laundering.

Silva Pereira was ordered held at the country’s highest-security prison pending trial.

He allegedly bribed local officials to grant unfair contracts to front companies.

He then allegedly laundered as much as $14 million in proceeds from the scheme. Silva Pereira was detained by immigration authorities in Anaheim, California and held in Arizona, where he requested asylum but was denied.