Khodorkovsky Applies to Live in Switzerland, Spokesperson Says

ZURICH — Former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky has submitted a request to settle permanently in Switzerland, a spokeswoman said Monday.

The 50-year-old prominent Kremlin critic was granted a three-month Schengen visa by Switzerland at the end of 2013 after being released from Russian prison, and he arrived by train in Basel from Berlin at the start of January to take his two youngest sons back to school.

A spokeswoman for Khodorkovsky confirmed that he had submitted a request for permanent residency in Switzerland, but she declined to give any further details on where exactly he was hoping to make his home.

Khodorkovsky's second wife Inna has a home in Geneva, where several of his companies had operations, the Swiss daily Le Matin reported.

Once Russia's richest man, Khodorkovsky was jailed in 2003 for fraud and tax evasion. He was seen by many as a political prisoner, the highest-profile victim of President Vladimir Putin's campaign to rein in the "oligarchs" who had made fortunes snapping up assets in the chaotic years of Boris Yeltsin's rule following the collapse of Soviet communism.

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