Magnitsky verdict makes a mockery of human rights and of the Russian justice system


ALDE Party President Sir Graham Watson MEP says the guilty verdict in the tax evasion case against the late Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky makes a mockery not only of the internationally agreed conventions on human rights but also of the Russian justice system itself.

Sir Graham said: ‘’The respect for human rights is a core value for European Liberals and so I speak for many across our continent when I say I am appalled by the way this case has been handled. I agree with those who have described it as ‘farcical’ and ‘deeply sinister’. Mr Magnitsky complained repeatedly about the conditions in which he was held, including solitary confinement in freezing temperatures with overflowing toilets, physical and mental intimidation and the denial of medical treatment which is thought to have contributed to his death. All of this was inflicted on someone who was simply trying to expose wrongdoing on a massive scale, at the expense of the Russian tax payer.”

“No trial can be described as legitimate when the defendant is not able to respond to the accusations against him because he is in fact dead. This is a show trial worthy of the Stalin era. The implication in terms of respect for the internationally-agreed norms of human rights, particularly regarding a fair trial, is frightening and ominous.’’

Note to editors

In 2008, Mr Magnitsky claimed to have uncovered evidence of widespread tax fraud by senior officials totalling an estimated 144 million euros. However, he was arrested himself shortly afterwards and accused of involvement. The 37-year-old died of pancreatitis in custody in 2009 but his supporters claim he had been repeatedly beaten and denied medical treatment.

It is thought to be the first time a case has been tried posthumously in Russian or Soviet history.

Mr Magnitsky’s former client, Briton William Browder, has been convicted in absentia and sentenced to nine years in custody.

A US visa ban and asset freeze for any Russian officials linked the lawyer’s ordeal was agreed under recent legislation known as the Magnitsky law. Europol is said to be investigating whether EU banks have received funds issuing from the case. unshaven girls микрозайм онлайн zp-pdl.com https://zp-pdl.com/apply-for-payday-loan-online.php займ на карту онлайн

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