Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko is likely to be found guilty of charges of abuse of office linked to the signing of a gas deal with Russia in 2009, her lawyer said on Friday.
Sentencing will begin on October 11, Judge Rodion Kireev said. Arguments were summed up on Friday at Tymoshenko's trial. She is accused of exceeding her authority by signing the contract, which Kiev says cost Ukraine millions of dollars.
During the session, Tymoshenko supporters reacted angrily to the judge's decision to expel them from the courtroom when the verdict is announced. Journalists will be allowed to attend the session.
"Thus, the judge has already made it clear that the verdict will be guilty," Yury Sukhov told journalists after the court hearing.
Tymoshenko, who has repeatedly rejected all charges brought against her as politically motivated, asked the court on Friday to postpone her last plea until Monday. Judge Kireyev then announced a break in the session until 02:00 pm Kiev time (11:00 GMT).
Tymoshenko's other lawyer, Aleaxnder Plakhotnyuk, suggested that his client's request may not be satisfied.
During Thursday's court session , Tymoshenko said she did not expect to be acquitted and would not ask for a pardon if found guilty.
As prosecutors urged a seven-year jail sentence for Tymoshenko earlier this week, President Viktor Yanukovych, who has faced Western criticism over the trial, introduced a bill to the parliament which would ban imprisonment as punishment for economic crimes, replacing it with a fine.
Among other proposals, the bill provides for the decriminalization of Article 365 of the country's Criminal Code stipulating punishment for abuse of power by officials.
Besides a possible prison term, Tymoshenko should also pay $195 million in damages allegedly caused to Ukrainian state gas monopoly Naftogaz by the 2009 deal, which Kiev has described as "unfair."
Moscow and Kiev launched talks on reviewing the price Ukraine pays for Russian gas after a row over the issue came to a head earlier this month. Ukraine has said Kiev was overpaying up to $6 billion a year for Russian gas.