Deputy Finance Minister detained in Moscow

Russia's Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak has been detained in Moscow by law enforcement authorities on criminal charges.

The report has been confirmed by Russia's Finance Ministry.

Sergey Storchak was seized outside the ministry building on Friday.

A ministry spokesman says the detention may be connected with a case against third parties not working for the ministry.

News agencies say the Federal Security Service searched Storchak's office.

Police haven't said why he's been detained, but Reuters is reporting that a source close to Finance Minister Aleksey Kudrin said he “could not rule out” that the detention was part of a campaign against Kudrin ahead of next month's parliamentary election.

Storchak is responsible for Russia's debt policy and oversees the $US 148 billion stabilisation fund.

He has been Deputy Finance Minister since 2005.

In 2006 he was the financial sherpa for the G8 summit in St. Petersburg.