Court Rules Oil Firm Must Pay $3.4 Billion

From Times Wire Reports

A Russian court upheld a tax ministry claim that oil company Yukos must pay $3.4 billion in back taxes, a move the firm has said may put it out of business.

A judge said Yukos still would have a chance to take its case to a higher court, and the company said it would appeal.

Yukos has said a demand by the court to pay the tax claim right away would sink the firm because it does not have enough ready cash and its assets are frozen. Former Chief Executive Mikhail Khodorkovsky also faces fraud and tax evasion charges.