Mikhail Khodorkovsky is led behind bars in a Moscow courtroom Tuesday.
The Russian government would like certain of its Western counterparts, particularly Germany and the U.S., to know that their critiques of the Russian justice system’s approach to the trial of sometime Putin antagonist and oil magnate Mikhail Khodorkovsky are unwelcome at this time. Both nations have expressed concerns about the potential role of local politics in Khodorkovsky’s extortion trial, but their judgments have since been met with a clear message: Butt out. —KA
Attempts to exert pressure on the court are unacceptable,” the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement on its website.
“We expect everyone to mind his own business, both at home and in the international arena.”
Assertions that justice was being applied selectively in Russia were, the statement said, “groundless”.
The judge found Khodorkovsky and Lebedev guilty of stealing from their own firm, Yukos, and laundering the proceeds.
Delivering the full verdict and sentence is expected to take several days.
The White House said it was “deeply concerned” about the verdict, calling it a “selective application” of justice.