MOSCOW, June 7 - RAPSI. Former YUKOS head Mikhail Khodorkovsky has asked Supreme Court Chairman Vyacheslav Lebedev to cancel the sentence in the second case against him, according to his press center.
"I appeal to you because the YUKOS case has gained a symbolic meaning for millions of entrepreneurs, managers, educated and even indifferent Russian citizens," he was quoted by his press center as saying. "Many people all over the world are watching this decision. Regardless of your desire, the YUKOS case and, first of all, the judicial acts in the case, establish a practice that can hardly be called rule of law."
He added that the Supreme Court should annul the resolution issued by Supreme Court Judge Alexander Voronov on May 15. He called the ruling, "professionally misled to put it lightly."
The YUKOS case has been one of the most high profile in Russia in recent years. In the early 2000s, the authorities accused YUKOS executives, then the country's largest oil company, of economic crimes. YUKOS then went bankrupt and its assets were transferred to Rosneft. Many in the West believe the case was politically driven, though Moscow denies these charges.
In late 2010, a Moscow district court sentenced Khodorkovsky and his partner Platon 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 previous convictions from their first trial in 2005. However, on May 24, the Moscow City Court reduced their sentences by one year. They are now looking to be released in 2016.