Prosecutors investigate Tymoshenko in murder case
Oct. 29, 2011, 5:23 p.m. | Ukraine
— by Associated Press
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko with her daughter Evhenya, left, seen during a trial hearing at the Pecherskiy District Court in Kiev, Ukraine, Friday, Sept. 30, 2011, where Tymoshenko denies all charges. A judge has begun deliberations in the abuse-of-office trial of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Tymoshenko is charged with exceeding her authority in the signing of a natural gas import contract with Russia in 2009. Prosecutors have asked for a seven-year prison sentence. The trial has been condemned by the U.S. and the European Union as politically motivated
© AP Photo/Olexander Prokopenko, Pool
A senior Ukrainian prosecutor says that authorities are investigating whether the imprisoned ex-Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was involved in a contract-style killing 15 years ago.
A televised statement made late Friday by Deputy Prosecutor General Renat Kuzmin further dims hopes that Tymoshenko, sentenced to seven years in jail earlier this month, could be released any time soon.
Kuzmin said that prosecutors are looking into claims that Tymoshenko was involved in the slaying of a lawmaker and businessman in 1996.
The West has criticized Tymoshenko's jailing on charges of abuse of office as the politically motivated prosecution of a top opposition leader by her longtime foe, President Viktor Yanukovych.
Tymoshenko's office denied the new allegations.