Cairo: Egyptian police arrested on Tuesday Hisham Qandil, who was prime minister under deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, the interior ministry said.
The ministry said he was arrested in the desert outside Cairo with a "smuggler attempting to escape to Sudan," south of Egypt.
During his time in office, a court had sentenced Qandil to a year in prison for not carrying out a ruling to re-nationalise a company that had been privatised in 1996.
A Cairo appeals court upheld the sentence in September.
An unpopular prime minister, Qandil kept a low profile after Morsi`s overthrow by the military in July.
He represented an alliance of pro-Morsi Islamist groups in meetings with European mediators who tried to defuse tensions with the military-installed government.
The efforts failed in August, with the police launching a massive crackdown that killed more than 1,000 people in street clashes and imprisoned thousands, including top Islamists.