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Top Russian University Head Vladimir Mau Detained on Fraud Charges

Vladimir Mau Sergey Savostyanov / TASS

The head of one of Russia’s leading universities was detained Thursday in connection with a fraud investigation targeting a former senior education official.

Vladimir Mau, head of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), was detained as a suspect in a 21-million-ruble ($399,810) embezzlement case, Russia’s Interior Ministry said

Investigators have requested house arrest for Mau, the RBC business daily reported.

A prominent economist, Mau, 62, is seen as well-connected to high-level government officials and, in addition to his university post, is also a member of the board of directors of state-owned gas giant Gazprom and the Economic Council Presidium, an advisory body to the Russian president. 

The criminal case in which Mau has been implicated was opened last year against former deputy education minister Marina Rakova, who investigators allege stole about 21 million rubles intended for a state educational program.

Rakova was arrested on fraud charges in October 2021 and Sergei Zuyev, head of the prestigious Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences — known as Shaninka — was accused of fraud the same month.

Both Rakova and Zuyev remain in jail awaiting trial. 

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