Police in El Salvador arrested the country’s ex-president Elias Antonio Saca and several other former officials on Sunday for alleged embezzlement and money laundering, officials said.
Saca, 51, and six other former officials from his government were detained in the early morning “on charges of various crimes,” they said on Twitter.
Saca is a member of the conservative Nationalist Republican Alliance. He was president of El Salvador from 2004 to 2009.
He is accused of embezzlement, money laundering and links to illegal groups, the prosecutors’ office said.
It gave no further details of the accusations for the time being.
A self-made businessman, Saca was a well-known journalist before becoming president.
He was seen as a strong ally of the United States during his time in power.
The other suspects arrested include former public waterworks official Cesar Funes, 46, and ex-presidential communications chief Julio Rank, 65.
Police said those two were detained along with Saca in an exclusive restaurant.
Salvadoran media reported that the three were there to celebrate the wedding of one of Saca’s sons.
Official sources said the suspects were in custody in the premises of the anti-drugs squad in the capital San Salvador.
El Salvador is a Central American country of six million people, bordered by Guatemala and Honduras.
It is stricken by poverty and violent crime involving drug gangs.