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Lebedev lawyers appeal conviction

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MOSCOW, December 27 (RIA Novosti) - Defense lawyers for Platon Lebedev, a major shareholder in embattled oil company Yukos, said they had appealed a district court's verdict pronouncing their client guilty of fraud and embezzlement.

This is a repeat appeal on the part of Lebedev's defense team. Lawyers for his co-defendant, former Yukos CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky, made a second appeal December 9.

After the first appeals in September, the Moscow City Court reduced the men's initial sentences, handed down by the Meshchansky Court, to eight years, but their attorneys want the district court's ruling completely overturned.

Khodorkovsky and Lebedev are now serving time in prisons in Russia's Far East.

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