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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Khodorkovsky Not Eligible for Parole

Former Yukos CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky would have been eligible for parole Thursday -- the fourth anniversary of his detention -- if he had not received a reprimand over a violation of prison rules, his lawyer Yury Shmidt said.

Thursday marked the halfway point in Khodorkovsky's eight-year prison sentence on tax evasion and fraud charges. An inmate can be released on parole if he has served half his time and has no reprimands on his record.

But Khodorkovsky received a reprimand from the authorities at the Chita pretrial detention unit that he is sharing with his former business partner Platon Lebedev while prosecutors investigate new charges against them, Shmidt said Thursday.

Khodorkovsky did not put his hands behind his back -- as prison rules require -- when he returned to his cell after exercise, Shmidt said. "We will appeal this decision," he told reporters.

Also Thursday, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Lebedev's rights were violated during his detention and ordered the Russian government to pay him 10,000 euros ($14,200) in damages and costs.

The court found five violations of Lebedev's right to liberty and security during his detention in a session where the Russian judge on the panel supported three of the six complaints.

The court -- composed also of judges from Greece, Cyprus, Croatia, Austria, Azerbaijan and Norway -- ruled, however, that the government did not block Lebedev's right of petition.

When the ruling comes into force in three months, it will not bind the authorities to let Lebedev out of prison, court spokeswoman Tracey Turner-Tretz said.

In 2005, Khodorkovsky was sent to a prison camp in the Chita region, while Lebedev was sent to a camp in the Yamal-Nenets autonomous district. Lebedev and Khodorkovsky were later moved to a pretrial detention unit in Chita after prosecutors filed new charges of money laundering against them.

The Prosecutor General's Office on Thursday had no comment on the European Court of Human Rights' ruling.

Lebedev's lawyer Yelena Liptser could not be reached for comment Thursday, while another of Lebedev's lawyers, Yevgeny Baru, said he was not representing Lebedev in Strasbourg.

The court said the government committed violations in detaining Lebedev without proper court authorization for seven days in 2004 and in keeping him away from a detention hearing the same year, while his lawyers were absent from a 2003 hearing and there was a delay in reviewing a detention warrant.

Anatoly Kovler, a Russian judge on the Strasbourg panel, supported three of Lebedev's six complaints but joined two judges from Azerbaijan and Norway in voting against two more complaints. The court rejected one complaint -- against Russia's failure to respect the right of petition -- unanimously.