Person of the Week: Mikhail Khodorkovsky

posted 6 Jul 2015, 10:38 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 6 Jul 2015, 11:03 ]
On 30 June the Investigative Committee announced that it is reopening a criminal investigation into the 1998 murder of Vladimir Petukhov, then mayor of Nefteyugansk. The Investigative Committee said it wished to question Mikhail Khodorkovsky, former owner of Yukos who spent ten years in prison in Russia on charges seen by many as retribution for challenging the power of President Putin. The Investigative Committee named Khodorkovsky as prime suspect. Mikhail Khodorkovsky was declared to be a prisoner of conscience by Amnesty International in  May 2012. 

Reuters reported that Khodorkovsky denied  involvement in the murder of Vladimir Petukhov. Khodorkovsky suggested on Twitter that the new investigation was politically motivated. Reuters said Vadim Klyuvgant, a lawyer for Khodorkovsky, had told RIA Novosti news agency that 'Markin's remarks were "fantasy" .'

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported: '[Investigative] Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin said Khodorkovsky “might have personally ordered this murder and a number of other extremely serious crimes." Khodorkovsky's spokeswoman Olga Pispanen called the allegations "some form of summer madness." '

Mikhail Khodorkovsky's website, Khodorkovsky, posted an English translation of his comment  on the statement by the prosecutor's office published on his Facebook page: 

'Guys, you can reopen and invent new criminal cases, spend an insane amount of money on presentations of stupid books about me, photoshop my photos and display them at Novy Arbat Street, threaten my supporters, set troll factories on me. You can come up with a million ways to put pressure on me. I.WILL.NOT.STOP. So be aware of that.'

Photo: Wikipedia


'Khodorkovsky Probed In Russian Mayor's Killing', RFE/RL, 30 June 2015
'Kremlin critic Khodorkovsky named as murder suspect in Russia', Reuters, 30 June 2015
'I will not stop', Khodorkovsky, 1 July 2015
'Russia: Khodorkovsky and Lebedev are prisoners of conscience', Amnesty International, 25 May 2011