14:00 GMT +318 February 2018
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    New Khodorkovsky allegations require 6 mths study - lawyer

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    NOVOSIBIRSK, July 30 (RIA Novosti) - A lawyer for Yukos founder Mikhail Khodorkovsky jailed for fraud and tax evasion said it would take the businessman at least six months to study a new criminal case being brought against him.

    Russian prosecutors have brought new charges against Khodorkovsky, who was sentenced to eight years in May 2005. He is now accused of stealing government shares, expropriating oil, and laundering $25 billion earned from oil sales in 1998-2004. Both Khodorkovsky and his business partner Platon Lebedev deny the allegations.

    "The case is big - more than 120 volumes, and it will take a long time to study," lawyer Natalia Terekhova said. Yury Schmidt, another lawyer for Khodorkovsky, said earlier that his client and the defense team had been forced to study the case.

    In April, the Basmanny Court of Moscow and the Moscow City Court ruled against the investigation into the new charges, thereby granting a request from Khodorkovsky's lawyers.

    But prosecutors resumed the inquiry in July despite the court ruling. "Investigators at the prosecutor's office are defying court rulings, saying that the probe is conducted in Chita," the Khodorkovsky press center said. The former tycoon is serving his sentence near the Siberian city of Chita.

    Lawyer Terekhova said the case would be sent onto prosecutors to decide on the indictment and then submitted to court.

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