UPDATE: Court hears Khodorkovsky appeal

MOSCOW, September 19 (RIA Novosti) - The Moscow City Court is hearing the appeal against the nine-year jail sentence of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the former chief executive of Yukos facing fraud and tax evasion charges.

Khodorkovsky, 42, told the court that an infected inmate had been pushed into his cell earlier.

"On the next day after the court session of September 14, an infected man was pushed into three out of ten cells on our floor," Khodorkovsky said, but did not elaborate on the type of infection.

Khodorkovsky said Lebedev, his business partner facing the same charges, was also in one of the three cells. On Friday, September 16, the cells were placed under quarantine, which prevented Khodorkovsky from meeting with his lawyers.

The original appeals hearing, scheduled for September 14, was postponed because Genrikh Padva, Khodorkovsky's lawyer contracted to work on the appeal, had fallen ill and was taken to the hospital. Khodorkovsky is expected to select another lawyer from his defense team to replace Padva.

More than 200 police officers are currently stationed outside the Moscow City Courthouse. Only the press and people attending other court hearings today are being allowed into the building.

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