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Three Chechens plead not guilty to Moscow murder of US journalist

[JURIST] Three ethnic Chechens charged with the murder [JURIST report] of US journalist Paul Klebnikov [Economist obituary] pleaded not guilty Tuesday during a closed hearing in a Moscow court on the first day of their trial. Observers expect an emotional and time-consuming proceeding unfolding in coming months - the Russian government has written a 600-page case and expects to call as many as 150 witnesses in the high-profile murder case. Klebnikov was shot in 2004 outside the Moscow office of the Russian edition of Forbes magazine, where he served as the magazine's editor. Russian authorities believe that Chechen rebel leader and current fugitive Khozh-Akhmed Nukhayev [AFP profile] allegedly ordered the killings [JURIST report] in retaliation for a book Klebnikov wrote about Nukhayev titled Conversations with a Barbarian. Prosecutors will begin arguing their case tomorrow. AP has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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