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The Russian Supreme Court requested the criminal cases against former Yukos executives Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev. The lawyers of the convicted persons saw in this move a chance for their clients to gain parole. However, the presidium of the Arkhangelsk region has court denied parole to Lebedev.
The newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta explains that a special request is needed for the reviewed cases with the verdicts to be sent to the Supreme Court. In mid-February, the Supreme Court sent such a document to Moscow’s Khamovniki and Meshchansky district courts, requesting the Khodorkovsky and Lebedev cases. The lawyers of Khodorkovsky and Lebedev believe that the Supreme Court requested the cases after their statements. There was a document in which the lawyers wrote that the judges who had reviewed both high-profile cases should be arraigned for forgery.
The lawyers saw signs of forgery in the resolution by the presidium of the Moscow City Court. It said the Yukos company had purchased oil from its affiliates at understated prices. This claim seems to be supported by financial expert examinations. But the defense has stated that there are no such documents in the case.
According to Mikhail Khodorkovsky's lawyer Vadim Klyuvgant, a decision was made to use these inconsistences in the review at the Supreme Court, the Novye Izvestia writes.
Klyuvgant said he could not say when the Supreme Court might pass its decision. "Handing over a criminal case from a district court to the Supreme Court is a very lengthy procedure; the timeframe might extend by several months; and the procedure itself is routine. The lawyer said he was hoping for "at least one positive development, but the case is ten years old and whatever has happened before has little to do with the law."
On Tuesday, the presidium of the Arkhangelsk region court upheld the rulings by lower courts to deny parole to Platon Lebedev, the Kommersant writes.
Under the decision by the presidium of the Moscow City Court which cut his sentence last year from 13 to 11 years, Lebedev is to be set free on July 2, 2014 Meanwhile, Lebedev's lawyers plant to appeal to the Supreme Court again.