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Yukos Verdict Reading Enters 9th Day


Judges in the controversial trial of Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky have completed reading an assessment of the personal tax evasion charges, in their ninth day of delivering the verdict in the case.

Mr. Khodorkovsky and his partner, Platon Lebedev, are widely expected to be found guilty on fraud and tax evasion charges.

Wednesday the court dropped a minor forgery charge.

The judgment is hundreds of pages long, and Russian law requires that it be read aloud.

Mr. Khodorkovsky faces 10 years in prison if convicted. He is the former head of the giant Yukos oil company. The charges are connected to privatization deals in the 1990s.

Critics see the case as Kremlin retaliation for his support of Russia's political opposition. The Russian government says the trial is aimed at cracking down on corporate crime.

Some information for this story provided by AP.

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