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Cop Who Ate Bribe Cash Fined

A Saratov region traffic cop who tried to avoid arrest for taking a bribe by hastily eating 15,000 rubles ($480) he had just pocketed was hit with a whopping 600,000 ruble fine.

Andrei Zakharov was caught in May while sitting in an official car outside a police station in the town of Rtishchevo taking a bribe in return for giving a driver his license back, the Investigative Committee said Monday.

But instead of quietly turning himself in, Zakharov tore up the three 5,000 ruble notes and ate them, the committee said on its web site.

In July, Zakharov was fined 90,000 rubles and barred from working in law enforcement for two years, but prosecutors felt the punishment was too light and appealed the sentence.

Zakharov's cover-up effort pales in comparison to that of Boris Simonov, a Federal Fisheries Agency official who last year threw 10 million rubles of bribe money out the window of a moving car on a busy Moscow street in an effort to avoid arrest.

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