Monday, August 29, 2005

The trial of Khodorkovsky: the crux of the matter

The Russian tycoon/oligarch-turned-civil-society-advocate Mikhail Khodorkovsky who was sentenced to nine years in prison, has been getting a lot of ink in the Western and Russian press. However, the range of opinions was remarkably narrow. Either it's another onslaught on democracy in Pitun's Russia or the damned oligarkhs are finally paying their dues.
The Russian journal, the Expert published two in-depth articles on the trial wherein the authors attempted to examine the validity of the charges as such, without resorting to political banter.
I also provide links to their LJ blogs where further discussion on the subject can be found.
Read them (all in Russian unfortunately) but seems to be the main conclusion is this:
The offshore firms Khodorkovsky used to buy state property had been created long time before and used in other deals. Many witnesses and Khodorkovsky's employees of the time mention certain Moiseev who seems to have been his right-hand man at the time. Yet, both the defense and prosecution didn't deem it necessary to summon him up for questioning.
It appears that Moiseev was a KGB man and it explains the reluctance on the part of both sides to bring him up.

First Expert's article
Discussion at the author's LJ blog

Second Expert's article
The author's blog


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