(CNN) -- Al Qaeda's top financier for Yemen and Saudi Arabia has been taken into custody, the Yemeni government announced Sunday.
"He is expected to be an intelligence mine for information which will hopefully result in the capture or killing of al Qaeda militants," the government said in a news release.
Hassan Hussein Bin Alwan was arrested in the eastern province of Marib on Friday, the government said.
The news release included a quote from an anonymous security official saying the government had been tracking Bin Alwan, and calling the arrest "a major coup in the war on al Qaeda."
"Bin Alwan's arrest will be instrumental in understanding the system of global terrorism financing," the news release said.
The Yemeni government noted that the development "comes days after Yemeni prosecutors demanded the maximum sentence of death for 16 suspected al Qaeda members."