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U.S. Jury Finds Former Ukrainian Premier Guilty

3 June 2004 -- A U.S. jury has convicted former Ukrainian Prime Minister Pavel Lazarenko on money laundering and extortion charges.

The jury in San Francisco found Lazarenko guilty of using his political position to extort money and launder it through U.S. banks. Lazarenko has denied the charges. Lawyers said he could face up to five years in prison.

Lazarenko, who was Ukraine's prime minister from 1996-97, had previously been convicted by a Swiss court in absentia on money-laundering charges.

His conviction today came as Interpol's office in Ukraine issued a new arrest warrant for Lazarenko, effective until 2008.