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Verdict Reading Enters Third Day in Yukos Oil Case


Mikhail Khodorkovsky

The reading of the verdict against jailed Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky has entered a third day, Wednesday.

Defense lawyers say it may be quite some time before the verdict is read in its entirety. But they agree that the Moscow court will likely find their client guilty of the fraud and tax evasion charges against him.

Mr. Khodorkovsky is the former head of the Yukos oil company. He and his partner Platon Lebedev, are charged with fraud connected to privatization deals in the 1990s. He faces up to 10 years in prison.

The Kremlin says the trial is aimed at cracking down on corporate crime. But many critics say the Kremlin is angry over Mr. Khodorkovsky's support for the political opposition.