Sanader became head of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) in 2000, pledging to modernize and strengthen the conservative party. Elections in 2003 gave the HDZ a plurality in parliament, and Sanader became prime minister of a coalition government. Sanader and the HDZ retained power after the 2008 vote, leading a broadened coalition.
He stepped down as prime minister in 2009 and announced his retirement from politics; when he subsequently announced his political comeback, he was expelled from the HDZ but remained in parliament as an independent. In Dec., 2010, after Croatian prosecutors sought to detain Sanader in connection with a corruption investigation, he was arrested in Austria and extradited to Croatia seven months later. Additional corruption charges were brought against him in 2011 and 2013. He was convicted on various corruption charges in 2012 and 2014, but retrials in both cases were ordered in 2015.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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