MOSCOW, September 12 - RAPSI. A Moscow City Court today received case documents in an appeal filed by YUKOS head Mikhail Khodorkovsky and his business partner Platon Lebedev, against their sentences for oil theft and money laundering, Khodorkovsky's lawyer Yelena Liptser told the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI).

In late 2010, a Moscow district court sentenced Khodorkovsky and Lebedev to 14 years in prison for oil theft and money laundering. They were expected to be released in 2017, taking into account the time they had already served for their convictions from their first trial in 2005. However, on May 24, the Moscow City Court reduced their sentences by one year each. The two are now expected to be released in 2016.

Khodorkovsky and Lebedev earlier complained that the court was deliberately delaying hearing their appeal against their sentences. Moscow City Court's spokesperson Olga Yegorova responded that the document transfer was delayed due to a large number of case documents.

The Moscow City Court is now set to hear their appeal.

Khodorkovsky is serving his sentence in Segezh, Republic of Karelia, while Lebedev is serving his sentence in Velsk, Arkhangelsk Region. Lebedev's parole application was rejected, but the decision was appealed and therefore has not yet entered into force. Meanwhile, Khodorkovsky's parole application has yet to be heard. It is currently at the Segezh prison, Khodorkovsky's attorneys said.