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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Yukos Exec Could Get 9 Years

Prosecutors on Thursday asked a Moscow court to sentence a lawyer who worked for fallen oil major Yukos to nine years in prison for embezzlement and tax evasion if found guilty, news agencies reported.

Svetlana Bakhmina, 36, who has two young sons, worked as the deputy chief of the Moscow legal department of Yukos, which has been brought to its knees by back tax claims, arrests and the sale of its biggest producing unit.

Prosecutors say Bakhmina is guilty of embezzlement and tax evasion while stripping millions of dollars of assets from Tomskneft, a major Yukos subsidiary. She denies the charges.

The prosecution "asks the court to sentence Bakhmina to nine years in prison," Nikolai Vlasov, a member of the prosecution team, told Itar-Tass.

Bakhmina's defense lawyers will next week present a summary of their case, after which Bakhmina will be given a chance to sum up her views. The judges will then hand down their verdict.

Her lawyer, Alexander Gofstein, declined to comment.

Bakhmina's fate has drawn widespread condemnation after she was refused bail and prevented from speaking to her two young sons by telephone. She suffered kidney problems after a hunger strike in protest of not being allowed to speak to her children.

She was detained in December 2004 and after questioning was taken to a medical facility, where she faced further questions, without her lawyers.