MOSCOW, June 15 (RAPSI) – The Khamovnichesky District Court of Moscow will begin hearing a criminal case against Yukos oil company’s former lawyer Pavel Ivlev on June 29, attorney Sergey Kupreichenko has told RAPSI.

The court refused to return the case to prosecutors.

The proceedings are held behind closed doors because the defendant resides in the United States. According to the attorney, Ivlev is the U.S. citizen and although the defendant agrees to testify, he is unlikely to visit Russia.

According to investigators, ex-lawyer was a member of an organized crime group led by ex-Yukos head Mikhail Khodorkovsky, which could embezzle more than 195 million metric tons of oil belonging to Yuganskneftegaz, Samaraneftegaz and Tomskneft companies.

Investigators believe that the amount of embezzled funds reaches about one trillion rubles ($15.9 billion).