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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 19 February, 2003, 23:29 GMT
Diplomat shot dead in Prague
The body is removed from the embassy
The body is removed from the embassy
Czech police have launched a major investigation after a senior diplomat was shot dead at the Nigerian embassy in the capital, Prague.

The dead man has been named as 50-year-old Michael Lekara Wayid, Nigeria's consul in the Czech Republic.

Polcie say they have arrested a 72-year-old Czech man.

According to unconfirmed reports, the man is suspected of opening fire because he was the victim of a financial swindle by a Nigerian group.

He is said to have been persuaded to give his bank details to someone posing as a senior Nigerian official.

In recent years, Nigerian-based organisations have been suspected of operating fraudulent schemes in several countries, promising large returns on financial transactions.

Bodyguards

Police spokeswoman Daniela Razimova said the suspect arrived at the embassy to discuss an unspecified business matter at 1030 (0930 GMT) and that shots were heard some time afterwards.

The embassy's 37-year-old receptionist in a next-door office went to investigate and was shot in the hand.

It was he who called embassy bodyguards, who detained the suspected attacker until police arrived.

The clerk is being treated in the Central Military Hospital, as is the suspected attacker, who reportedly collapsed at the scene of the shooting.

Police have been granted permission to enter the embassy, in the diplomatic quarter near the city centre, to investigate.





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