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Moscow Police Arrest Khodorkovsky Supporters At Court

Mikhail Khodorkovsky appears in court on March 31.

Mikhail Khodorkovsky appears in court on March 31.

MOSCOW -- Police have detained several supporters of Mikhail Khodorkovsky who were demonstrating outside the court in Moscow where the businessman's case is being heard, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The protestors gathered outside the Khamovnichesky court on March 31 as a new major hearing began, and distributed leaflets asserting Khodorkovsky's innocence.

Khodorkovsky, the former chief executive of Russia's Yukos oil giant, and his associate Platon Lebedev have both been convicted of fraud and tax evasion and sentenced to eight years in prison.

Khodorkovsky is now facing an additional set of embezzlement charges, for which he could face an additional 22 years in prison.