Moscow, Russia: Mikhail Khodorkovsky has been put on the international wanted list, confirmed authorities on Wednesday.
Russia has put him on wanted criminal list for allegedly organising murder of a mayor in Siberia in 1998.
“Mikhail Khodorkovsky has been put on the international wanted list,” spokesman for the Investigative Committee Vladimir Markin said in a statement. He also said that following a request from investigators a Russian court had ordered the arrest of the former tycoon, who lives abroad and spends much of his time in London.
Meanwhile, Khodorkovsky’s spokeswoman Kulle Pispanen dismissed the announcement as political pressure, adding it would not affect him.
“Mikhail Borisovich will by no means limit his movements because of the hysterical actions of the Kremlin ghouls,” Pispanen told AFP, referring to the former business magnate by his first name and patronymic.
On Tuesday, investigators raided the apartments of employees of Khodorkovsky’s Moscow-based Open Russia group. The Investigative Committee has said it is also checking the information
provided in a Paris appeals court by shareholders of now-bankrupt Yukos, who are seeking $50 billion in damages from Russia and convinced the court to back the freezing of Russian assets in France.
Khodorkovsky spent a decade in prison on charges of tax evasion, fraud and embezzlement which he and his supporters say were trumped up in revenge for his political ambitions. He was pardoned by Putin in 2013 and flown out of the country.