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W hen his country’s destiny returned to its own hands by the fall of the Soviet Union, Pavel Lazarenko rose from lowly engineer to prime minister.

But his meteoric rise ended abruptly when he fled corruption charges leveled by Ukrainian officials. Even as Lazarenko was detained by U.S. authorities while trying to enter the country, his name was on presidential ballots back home.

Today, with his freedom, wealth and privilege lost behind the walls of a federal detention center, Lazarenko will ask U.S. District Judge Martin Jenkins to rule that he cannot be prosecuted here for events that took place half a world away.

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