July 5, 2009

No pardon for Khodorkovsky in works

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev says there's no pardon in the works for imprisoned oil magnate Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who was once the country's richest man.

At this point, there is nothing to discuss, Medvedev said Saturday on his official Web site.

As Russia's most famous inmate, Khodorkovsky remains a subject of interest, with supporters saying the Kremlin destroyed him to gain control of the Yukos oil company, which Khodorkovsky built from privatization deals in the 1990s, CNN reported Sunday. The Kremlin has denied any part in Khodorkovsky's downfall.

Khodorkovsky, who was convicted of fraud and tax evasion, has been imprisoned since 2003 at a work camp near Krasnokamensk, about 4,000 miles from Moscow.

On his Web site, Medvedev described corruption as a serious Russian disease that requires more transparency from government officials about their incomes and business dealings.

We are determined to continue this work, because we believe it is extremely important, Medvedev said.