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The district court in the Arkhangelsk Region satisfied partially an appeal of the lawyers of former MENATEP Bank CEO and former member of the YUKOS board Platon Lebedev that insisted on the reduction of a term in prison for their client over a mitigated sentence under Article 174.1 of the Criminal Code for legalization and laundering of criminal incomes. The court reduced a total sentence to Platon Lebedev by three years from 13 to 10 years. So, if this verdict is challenged by the prosecutor’s office, Lebedev will be set free in July 2013. His lawyers already stated that they will lodge an appeal.
The Kommersant daily recalled that an appeal for the reduction of the term of imprisonment to the former MENATEP CEO resulted from the reduction of the maximum sentence under Article 174.1 of the Criminal Code from 15 to seven years at the initiative of former President Dmitry Medvedev.
When the similar appeal was tried for the first time last August chairman of the Velsk District Court Viktor Ivanov reduced the term in prison for Platon Lebedev from 13 years to nine years and eight months, thanks to this the convict was to be released already on March 2, 2013. This ruling was appealed by the prosecutors, who found that the term in prison for Platon Lebedev was to be reduced to 11 years and three months, as well as by the lawyers, who insisted on the reduction of the term in prison for their client to the term in prison, which he had already served.
Judge Nikolai Raspopov has taken a judgement of Solomon. In the court ruling he reduced the term in prison by three years to Platon Lebedev, thanks to this he is to be released in July 2013, when he will serve exactly ten years in prison.
The prosecutors, who had already accused this court of excessive leniency, hesitate so far, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily reported. The lawyers hoped that the verdict for Lebedev will speed up the hearings of the supervisory appeal against a common verdict in the YUKOS criminal case. Human rights commissioner Vladimir Lukin urged to release Lebedev and Mikhail Khodorkovsky immediately.
The newspaper recalled that last July the same judge Raspopov denied a release on parole to Lebedev, finding that the latter did not confess. Meanwhile, after a court session he told reporters that he has passed this ruling “absolutely up to his convictions.”