Liberal Democratic Party fails to recover over $168,000 from Khodorkovsky
MOSCOW, March 24 (RAPSI) – The Moscow City Court upheld a lower court's decision to dismiss a lawsuit filed by lawmakers from the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR) seeking 10 million rubles (over $168,000) in damages from former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky for alleged damage to their reputation, RAPSI reported on Tuesday from the courtroom.
The LDPR filed a lawsuit to collect 10 million rubles from Khodorkovsky for writing in his book Prison and Freedom that the “LDPR earns it wages by voting. Directly and cynically.”
The party’s lawyer said this cost the LDPR part of its political attractiveness and electorate.
The lawmakers said in the lawsuit that Khodorkovsky had “unscrupulously and shamelessly” accused the LDPR of taking money for making a requested vote. The party said that it “respects the law and does not accept funding from dubious sources.”
Khodorkovsky’s representative said the quoted phrase was not negative or defamatory, because earning a living is not prohibited by law. As for “cynically,” it is an evaluative term.
The book was co-authored by journalist Natalya Gevorkyan and published in 2012.
Khodorkovsky, the former head of Russia’s largest oil producing company, Yukos, spent a decade in prison in what his supporters and human rights activists saw as a politically motivated case.
He was unexpectedly pardoned in late December 2013 and was flown to Germany the same day.