| Share
 

Mikhail Borisovich Khodorkovsky

Khodorkovsky, Mikhail Borisovich (mēkhəyēlˈ bərēˈsəvĭch kōdôrkôfˈskē) [key], 1963–, Russian business executive. In the waning years of the Soviet Union, he ran a computer import business and soon made a fortune by buying inexpensive state assets and trading commodities. An important early step in the building of his business empire was the founding (1989) of the private bank MENATEP, which gained control of the oil giant Yukos in the mid-1990s. By the beginning of the 21st cent. Khodorkovsky was a multibillionaire and the richest man in Russia. In the early years, he was aligned with the Russian government and served (1993) as Yeltsin's deputy fuel and oil minister, but during Putin's presidency he supported economic reforms and human-rights groups and began (2003) to fund Russian political parties. In Oct., 2003, Khodorkvsky was arrested and charged with fraud and tax evasion, and after an 11-month trial, he was found guilty and sentenced to eight years. The government also moved against Yukos, which was forced into bankruptcy and had its assets sold mainly to state-owned companies. Khodorkovsky accused Putin of attempting to silence a potential rival, a charge that won some support from human-rights campaigners. In 2010 he was convicted of embezzlement and money laundering and sentenced to six more years (reduced to five years in 2011); two court officials at the second trial charged in 2011 that the verdict had been dictated from somewhere above in the judicial system. In 2012 his sentence was reduced by two years. The European Court of Human Rights ruled in 2011 that although he had not proved his prosecution was politically motivated Russia had committed violations of his rights during his arrest and detention. He was pardoned in 2013, and went into exile.

See studies by R. Sakwa (2009) and M. Sixsmith (2010).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Russian, Soviet, and CIS History: Biographies


Premium Partner Content
HighBeam Research
Documents Images and Maps Reference
(from Newspapers, Magazines, Journals, Newswires, Transcripts and Books)

Research our extensive archive of more than 80 million articles from 6,500 publications.

Additional search results provided by HighBeam Research, LLC. © Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.

24 X 7

Private Tutor

Click Here for Details
24 x 7 Tutor Availability
Unlimited Online Tutoring
1-on-1 Tutoring