March 25, 2010 |
The prosecutors rear out like gargoyles from the walls overhead, fingers jabbing into the air. The massive cartoon faces of witnesses, lawyers and defendants crowd the walls, words popping in balloons from their lips. "Stand up!" commands a voice as visitors climb the stairs to the exhibition, invoking the opening moments of a trial. "The judge is coming." In a gutted perfume bottle factory on a nondescript street in downtown Moscow, an exhibit opening Friday paints a fantastic, caricatured dreamscape of the continuing trial of former oil magnate Mikhail Khodorkovsky.
March 4, 1993 |
Soon to go on trial for their lives, many of the 12 aging Soviet Communists who tried to wrest control of the Kremlin are making no secret of their determination to turn the case into the bruising inquisition of a former comrade: Mikhail S. Gorbachev. "Gorbachev was a traitor," charged former Vice President Gennady I. Yanayev, a baggy-eyed heavy drinker whose hands visibly quaked when he announced Aug. 19, 1991, that he was assuming the Soviet president's duties.
April 30, 1992 |
The jury foreman looked pained. He had just awarded a whopping 70 million rubles to the bereaved family of a hypothetical accident victim, and it was a strange new sensation to put a price tag on a man's existence. "When it came to assessing the value of human life, that was the hardest part for us," foreman Lev Khaldeyev said. "In our country, no court had ever considered this." Now it has.
August 21, 1994 |
"The lawyer has never been a popular character in Russian literature," says Sergei A. Pashin, a hard-working, soft-spoken legal scholar whose mission is to bring his profession--and the law itself--at least some respect. Pashin, 31, leads the reform unit of President Boris N. Yeltsin's State Legal Agency. For two years, he has been campaigning for the "bourgeois" concepts--such as presumption of innocence--that Soviet professors taught him to reject.
February 18, 1987 |
A Holocaust expert, testifying Tuesday at the war crimes trial of retired U.S. auto worker John Demjanjuk, said he has found no evidence to support rumors that a Nazi guard known as "Ivan the Terrible" was killed in a 1943 uprising by inmates of the Treblinka death camp. Israel contends that Demjanjuk was "Ivan the Terrible." The Ukrainian-born former resident of Cleveland, Ohio, insists he is a victim of mistaken identity.
February 17, 1994 |
Embracing U.S. scientific standards, Russia has decided to allow near-automatic importation of hundreds of thousands of prescription and over-the-counter drugs made by American companies, the Clinton Administration announced Wednesday. The decision should significantly enhance public health in a country whose quality of health care has deteriorated in recent years along with its overall economy, officials said. It also could boost long-term profits for U.S. pharmaceutical companies, they said.