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Ukraine seeks seven years for Tymoshenko

Sept. 28, 2011 at 12:41 PM
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KIEV, Ukraine, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Ukrainian prosecutors say they're seeking seven years in prison for Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who is on trial in Kiev for alleged abuse of power.

Tymoshenko is accused of abusing her office by signing a 2009 natural gas deal with Russia that cost the government $195 million in damages.

Prosecutors say Tymoshenko should also be required to pay restitution, RIA Novosti reported.

Her defense attorneys say they're confident she will be acquitted.

"Considering that we believe that Tymoshenko did not commit any crime, even if the prosecution had asked for a one-year suspended sentence, this would have been too much," defense attorney Oleksandr Plakhotniuk told Interfax-Ukraine after Tuesday's hearing. "We view the indictment itself and naturally the sentence that the prosecutors asked for as unlawful."

Radio Free Europe said the European Union and the United States have suggested the case against Tymoshenko be dropped.

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