MOSCOW, May 20 (RAPSI, Maria Petrova) - The case of former officer of the organized crime department Sergei Khadzhikurbanov, a suspect in the murder of investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya, will be heard by a jury, his attorney Alexei Mikhalchik told RAPSI on Monday.

"The prosecutor is expected to finish his indictment today or tomorrow and to forward it for consideration to the Moscow City Court," Mikhalchik said. "When we signed a protocol on completing the reading of the case materials, we requested that my client's case be heard by a jury. The court has upheld our request."

Anna Politkovskaya, a journalist for the Novaya Gazeta opposition newspaper, was shot dead in her apartment building on October 7, 2006. Her murder is believed to be linked to her groundbreaking coverage of human rights abuses in Chechnya. She was also a passionate critic of the Kremlin.

The pre-trial investigation involved five defendants: Sergei Khadzhikurbanov, brothers Rustam, Dzhabrail and Ibragim Makhmudov, their uncle Lom-Ali Gaitukayev and former police officer Dmitry Pavlyuchenkov.

Pavlyuchenkov agreed to a plea bargain, was tried and sentenced by the Moscow City Court to 11 years in prison.

Lom-Ali Gaitukayev is accused of having organized the murder and of having hired three relatives - the Makhmudov brothers - as well as former police officer Sergei Khadzhikurbanov to help him.