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Magnitsky list
#1
High finance. Who was stealing whose assets?

Quote:Factbox - Who's who on the U.S. Magnitsky list

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama's administration has released a list of 18 people who will be banned from the United States under a new law penalizing Russia for alleged human rights abuses.
The U.S. law, named after a Russian whistleblower called Sergei Magnitsky who died in prison in 2009, has become an irritant in relations between the former Cold War superpowers. Obama signed it in December.
Magnitsky, a 37-year-old lawyer who worked for the Hermitage Capital Management investment fund, found himself facing accusations of a $230 million (149.9 million pounds) tax fraud from the officials he had accused of responsibility.
Friends and family say Magnitsky was denied medical treatment in jail and died after a beating. Nobody has been found responsible. Instead, Magnitsky has been put on posthumous trial, in the first case of its kind in Russia, his lawyers say.
Sixteen people were put on the U.S. list "because of their association with the persecution and ultimate death of Sergei Magnitsky," a senior State department official said on Friday. The other two people on the list are linked to two other deaths.
They are all subject to U.S. visa bans and asset freezes in the United States.
Those on the list include:
ARTYOM KUZNETSOV, MOSCOW INTERIOR MINISTRY TAX INVESTIGATOR
An officer in the tax crimes unit of the Moscow division of Russia's Interior Ministry, Kuznetsov allegedly took part in the police raids on the offices of Hermitage and its law firm in 2007, according to Magnitsky's supporters.
Hermitage said the documents seized in the raids were later used to re-register ownership of its subsidiaries and claim an illegal $230 million tax refund paid to bogus new owners.
Kuznetsov, 38, also allegedly oversaw the arrest of Magnitsky on unrelated tax evasion charges, after Magnitsky had testified to the Interior Ministry about the suspect $230 million rebate.
Magnitsky's supporters have published information which they said showed Kuznetsov had acquired millions of dollars worth of property soon after the fraud. The Interior Ministry has found no evidence of wrongdoing by Kuznetsov.
PAVEL KARPOV, MOSCOW INTERIOR MINISTRY INVESTIGATOR
Karpov, who held the rank of major, was a senior investigator in the Moscow division of the Interior Ministry at the time of the 2007 police raids on Hermitage and its law firm.
Karpov, 35, was named along with Kuznetsov in testimonies by Magnitsky that described the tax rebate scheme. Magnitsky's supporters say that at the time of the alleged fraud, key documents were in Karpov's possession.
They subsequently published information which they said showed Karpov had bought more than a million dollars worth of property around the time the fraud was committed.
The Interior Ministry has found no evidence of wrongdoing by Karpov. Karpov, who has since resigned from the ministry, has initiated a libel case in London's High Court against Hermitage chief William Browder. Karpov's lawyer, Geraldine Proudler, has said that "there is not a shred of evidence against Karpov," and on Friday, Karpov denied the allegations.
"I am expecting soon the decision from the high court of London which will confirm the falsehood of the accusation" Karpov told Interfax.
OLEG SILCHENKO, FEDERAL INTERIOR MINISTRY INVESTIGATOR
Silchenko, a senior investigator at the federal Interior Ministry, was in charge of the investigation into Magnitsky and ordered his detention.
He also headed the investigation into the alleged $230 million tax rebate fraud reported by Magnitsky. The probe exonerated all Russian officials accused by Magnitsky and his supporters.
Magnitsky's supporters also accuse Silchenko, 35, of inhumane treatment of Magnitsky in custody, denying him medical treatment, family visits and phone calls.
Silchenko has denied mistreating Magnitsky, saying there was sufficient proof of Magnitsky's guilt, and calling the fraud accusations against law enforcement officials "absurd."
OLGA STEPANOVA, TAX OFFICER
Olga Stepanova headed Moscow Tax Office No. 28, which authorized 3.7 billion roubles (101 million pounds) in tax rebates that were part of the $230 million tax refund.
The Russian investigation into the alleged fraud cleared her and other tax officials of wrongdoing, saying that they had been misled into making the refunds.
Magnitsky's supporters have alleged that Stepanova and her ex-husband Vladlen Stepanov acquired millions of dollars of property shortly after the alleged fraud was committed. They published evidence which they said showed Vladlen Stepanov deposited money from the alleged fraud into offshore companies and a Swiss bank account.
Stepanov, a construction company manager, has responded to the allegations by saying that he bought all the property with his own money.
YELENA STASHINA, JUDGE
Yelena Stashina, a judge of the Tverskoi regional court of Moscow, prolonged Magnitsky's detention, according to allegations by U.S. lawmakers and rights activists.
Stashina "refused his (Magnitsky's) complaint about the deprivation of medical treatment at a hearing on November 12, 2009, four days before his death," said a paragraph about her in a summary of allegations against 60 Russian officials sent to the State Department back in 2010 by Democratic Senator Benjamin Cardin, who was proposing visa bans on all of them. Cardin was the main Senate sponsor of the Magnitsky Act.
ANDREY PECHEGIN, DEPUTY DIVISION HEAD IN PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE
Andrey Pechegin worked in the Russian general prosecutor's office as deputy head of the division of supervision of investigations. He allegedly denied more than 20 complaints from Magnitsky and his lawyers about Magnitsky's treatment, according to information from Cardin's 2010 list of allegations against the 60 officials.
KAZBEK DUKUZOV, AQUITTED IN KLEBNIKOV KILLING
Dukuzov is one of two natives of the Chechnya region who were tried for the 2004 killing in Moscow of American journalist Paul Klebnikov, the editor of the Russian edition of Forbes magazine, and were acquitted by a jury in 2006.
A retrial in 2007 was suspended because Dukuzov could not be tracked down. Nobody has been brought to justice over Klebnikov's killing.
LECHA BOGATYROV, IMPLICATED IN KILLING IN VIENNA
Lecha Bogatyrov was implicated by Austrian police as the killer of Umar Israilov, a former bodyguard of Kremlin-backed Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. Israilov became a critic of Kadyrov and was shot dead in Vienna in 2009. Bogatyrov reportedly escaped arrest and returned to Russia.http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/...sky-list#6
Quote:The publication of the so-called Magnitsky list will irrevocably bury the idea of ​​"reset" of relations between Russia and the United States, believes Alexei Pushkov of Russia's Duma Foreign Affairs Committee.



He noted that Russia has never declined partnership, but one can hardly talk of comprehensive cooperation at a time when the United States has gone ahead with an anti-Russian law that arbitrarily "blacklists" people whose guilt has not been recognized by any court exclusively on suspicions of U.S. congressmen.
The U.S. on Friday published the "Magnitsky list" that contains 18 names of officials allegedly linked to the 2009 death of Hermitage Group lawyer Sergey Magnitsky in a pre-trial detention center. These people will now see visa and financial sanctions applied against them allegedly over human rights abuses.
Alexei Pushkov said Russia has drawn up a list of its own, imposing symmetrical sanctions against U.S. human rights abusers.http://english.ruvr.ru/2013_04_13/Moscow...-ties-005/

Quote:Hermitage Capital Management


Hermitage Capital Management is an investment fund and asset management company specializing in Russian markets founded by Bill Browder and Edmond Safra. Hermitage Capital Management headquarters are in Guernsey, whilst it also maintains offices in the Cayman Islands and Moscow, Russia.[SUP][1][/SUP]
Its main investment fund, the Hermitage Fund created in 1996,[SUP][1][/SUP] has been extremely successful, earning 2,697% through December 2007, according to Opalesque.TV.[SUP][2][/SUP] It has been ranked the World's Best Performing Emerging Markets Fund over the 1996-2001 five-year period by Nelsons.
Hermitage is an activist fund. One of its main tactics is to expose corporate corruption in the companies it is holding, in the hope of improving managerial behaviour and lessen the significant discount that corruption has on share prices. Most famously, Hermitage has helped to expose several high-profile cases of corruption in Russia's largest company Gazprom between 1998 and 2000. In October 2000, Hermitage reported that "investors are valuing this company as if 99 percent of its assets have been stolen. The real figure is around 10 percent so that's good news."[SUP][3][/SUP]
In April 2007 the firm launched Hermitage Global, an activist fund focused on global emerging markets.
Russian Government controversy

Although the fund's founder William Browder was a supporter of Russian president Vladimir Putin, in November of 2005 he was blacklisted by the Russian government as a "threat to national security" and denied entry to the country. The Economist has accused the Russian government that this blacklisting occurred because he interfered with the flow of money to "corrupt bureaucrats and their businessmen accomplices."[SUP][4][/SUP]
As the New York Times reported in 2008,[SUP][5][/SUP] over the next two years, several of his associates and lawyers, as well as their relatives, were victims of crimes, including severe beatings and robberies during which documents were taken. In June 2007 dozens of police officers swooped down on the Moscow offices of Hermitage and its law firm, confiscating documents and computers. When a member of the firm protested that the search was illegal, he was beaten by officers and hospitalized for two weeks. Hermitage became victim of what is known in Russia as "corporate raiding": seizing companies and other assets with the aid of corrupt law enforcement officials and judges. Three Hermitage holdings companies were seized on what the company's lawyers insist are bogus charges.
On 8 October Hermitage released a video on YouTube accusing Russian Police of fraud.[SUP][5][/SUP]
On November 16, 2009 Sergei Magnitsky, a partner of the legal company Firestone Duncan, who was a representative and legal consultant for William Browder in Moscow, having been accused in tax fraud and imprisoned for 11 months, died in prison. In 2013 it was announced that Magnitsky will go on trial posthumously.
Opalesque.TV released a video on February 8th 2010 in which Browder reveals details of Sergey Magnitsky's ordeal during his eleven months in detention.[SUP][6][/SUP]
Quote:Bill Browder

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William Felix "Bill" Browder (born in 1964) is the Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of the investment fund Hermitage Capital Management.

Early life and education

Bill Browder is the grandson of Earl Browder, the former leader of the Communist Party USA,[SUP][1][/SUP] and the son of Felix Browder, the noted mathematician.
He grew up in Chicago, Illinois and attended the University of Chicago where he studied Economics. He received an MBA from Stanford Business School[SUP][2][/SUP] in 1989 where his classmates were Gary Kremen and Ryland Kelley. He later became a British citizen.[SUP][1][/SUP][SUP][3][/SUP]
Prior to setting up Hermitage, Browder worked in the Eastern European practice of the Boston Consulting Group in London and managed the Russian proprietary investments desk at Salomon Brothers.
Hermitage Capital Management

Bill Browder and Edmond Safra founded Hermitage Capital Management in 1996 for the purpose of investing initial seed capital of $25 million in Russia. The business was very successful, profiting from the wave of privatizations occurring in Russia at that time, and increased its investor base substantially. Following the Russian financial crisis of 1998 Browder continued the business of Hermitage investing in Russia, despite significant outflows from the fund. His fund became a prominent activist shareholder in the Russian gas giant Gazprom, the large oil company Surgutneftegaz, RAO UES, Sberbank, Sidanco, Avisma and Volzhanka.[SUP][4][/SUP] Browder exposed management corruption and corporate malfeasance in these partly state-owned companies.[SUP][5][/SUP] He has been quoted as saying: "You had to become a shareholder activist if you didn't want everything stolen from you".[SUP][1][/SUP]
In 1995-2006 Hermitage Capital Management was one of the biggest foreign investors in Russia[SUP][6][/SUP] and Browder has amassed a significant fortune through his management of the Fund. In 2006 he earned an estimated £125-150 million.[SUP][7][/SUP] In 2007 he earned a further £125-£150 million.[SUP][8][/SUP]
In March 2013, the bank HSBC which is the trustee and manager of the Hermital Capital Management, announced that it would be ceasing the fund's operations in Russia. The decision was taken amid a libel court case in London and a trial in absentia for tax evasion in Moscow, both against Browder. [SUP][9][/SUP]
Conflict with the Russian legal system

In 2006, after ten years doing business in the country, he was blacklisted by the Russian government as a "threat to national security" and denied entry to the country. The Economist wrote that the Russian government blacklisted Browder because he interfered with the flow of money to "corrupt bureaucrats and their businessmen accomplices". Browder had been a supporter of Russian president Vladimir Putin before, though.[SUP][10][/SUP]
As reported by the New York Times in 2008, "over the next two years several of his associates and lawyers, as well as their relatives, became victims of crimes, including severe beatings and robberies during which documents were taken". In June 2007 dozens of police officers "swooped down on the Moscow offices of Hermitage and its law firm, confiscating documents and computers. When a member of the firm protested that the search was illegal, he was beaten by officers and hospitalized for two weeks, said the firm's head, Jamison R. Firestone." Hermitage became "victim of what is known in Russia as "corporate raiding": seizing companies and other assets with the aid of corrupt law enforcement officials and judges". Three Hermitage holdings companies were seized on what the company's lawyers insist are bogus charges.[SUP][1][/SUP]
Since this time, Browder has continued to run Hermitage from offices in London. Hermitage has alleged that the raids in June 2007 were a pretext by corrupt law enforcement officers, to steal the corporate registration documents of three Hermitage holding companies, and reclaim the $230 million of taxes paid by those companies to the Russian state in 2006. In November 2008 one of his lawyers, Sergei Magnitsky, was arrested on charges of tax evasion, which Browder claims were instigated as a retaliatory measure by the same officers Magnitsky had accused of involvement in the $230 million theft in sworn testimony.[SUP][11][/SUP] Magnitsky died on November 16, 2009, after eleven months in pre-trial detention.[SUP][12][/SUP] Opalesque.TV released a video on February 8, 2010 where Browder spoke about Sergey Magnitsky's ordeal during his eleven months in detention.[SUP][13][/SUP]
In February 2013, Russian officials announced that Browder and Magnitsky would both be put on trial for evading $16.8 million in taxes. Both men will be tried in absentia.[SUP][14][/SUP] Furthermore, as announced in March 2013, Russian authorities will be investigating Browder illegally obtaining Gazprom shares worth $70 million by his company Hermitage Capital. The investigation will be focusing on whether he violated any Russian laws when his fund, Hermitage Capital, used Russian companies registered in the region of Kalmykia which employed disabled veterans from the Soviet War in Afghanistan for tax break purposes[SUP][15][/SUP] to purchase shares in the gas monopoly between 2001 and 2004, gain a seat on the board, and to exercise influence over its decisions. At the time, according to the Russian law, foreigners were barred from directly owning Gazprom shares. Browder has also been charged with trying to gain access to Gazprom's financial reports.[SUP][16][/SUP]
Browder admitted seeking influence in Gazprom but denied any wrongdoing.[SUP][17][/SUP] In his view, purchasing Gazprom shares was an investment in the Russian economy, while the desire to influence the Gazprom management was driven by the need to expose a "huge fraud going on at the company". In the meantime, the scheme with Russian-registered subsidiaries entitled to tax advantages was practiced by other foreign investors at the time and was not illegal, according to him.[SUP][18][/SUP]
Browder also said that he believes the trial is in response to the United States passing the Magnitsky Act, which blacklists Russian officials involved in Magnitsky's death from entering the U.S. As claimed by The Financial Times, this trial is deemed to be the first in Russian history over a dead defendant.[SUP][19][/SUP]
Amnesty International described the trial as "a whole new chapter in Russia's worsening human rights record" and a "sinister attempt to deflect attention from those who committed the crimes he Magnitsky exposed."[SUP][20][/SUP]
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
Reply
#2
Of course Hermitage was part of the looting of Mother Russia's assets by the West in the post-Glasnost era.

What interests me is that Putin, Russian intelligence and the Russian mob resorted to street thug tactics against Hermitage.

As recent events in Cyprus have again demonstrated, western financial elites usually retrospectively change the law and rules of the game if they feel they're being outmaneouvred or engage in dirty tricks....
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
Reply
#3
John Yoo's on the Russian list.

Can't argue with that...


Quote:Russia bans 18 Americans from country in answer to US list

Former Bush staffers and Guantanamo Bay commanders on list released in response to US Treasury visa bans


Matt Williams in New York
guardian.co.uk, Saturday 13 April 2013 17.45 BST
Jump to comments (83)

Sergei Magnitsky's grave in Moscow
Russia has issued visa bans on 18 Americans in response to a US list targeting officials implicated in the arrest and death of the lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. Photograph: Mikhail Voskresensky/Reuters

Moscow listed 18 Americans who are banned from entering Russia in an announcement Saturday a tit-for-tat measure that comes a day after Washington imposed similar sanctions. The list, which was released by the Russian Foreign Ministry, includes staffers in the Bush administration and two former commanders of Guantanamo Bay.

On Friday, the US Treasury announced financial sanctions and visa bans on 18 Russian officials, the majority of whom were implicated over the arrest and death of the corruption lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. Magnitsky died in a Russian prison in 2009, after being arrested by the same officers he was investigating over a $230m fraud. He was reportedly beaten and denied medical treatment while behind bars.

The case sparked an outcry in the US and led to the passage of a controversial bill requiring Washington to impose sanctions against those deemed responsible for the Russian whistleblower's death. The Magnitsky Act, which was signed into law last year, led to immediate counter measures by Moscow, which imposed a ban on US adoption of Russian children.

The Russian and American lists exclude senior figures, but will nonetheless further damage any chance of a "reset" on relations, which President Barack Obama has stated to be his aim.

Among those singled out by Washington for sanction are two police officers, Pavel Karpov and Artyom Kuznetsov, and a former tax official, Olga Stepanova. Magnitsky was arrested after linking the three to a tax fraud scheme. Of the 18 people named by the US Treasury, 16 are connected to the Magnitsky case. The other two were included in relation to the shooting death of a former bodyguard to the Chechen president, Ramzan Kadyrov, and the murder of a journalist, Paul Klebnikov.

The list published in Moscow includes John Yoo, a former US Justice Department official who wrote legal memos authorising harsh interrogation techniques, and David Addington, the chief of staff for former vice-president Dick Cheney. Two former commanders of Guantanamo Bay, retired Major General Geoffrey Miller and Admiral Jeffrey Harbeson, were also named. In addition, there were 14 Americans whom Russia claims violated the rights of Russians abroad. The list includes several current or former federal prosecutors in the case of Viktor Bout, a Russian arms merchant who was sentenced in 2012 to 25 years in prison, for selling weapons to a US-designated foreign terrorist group.

There is also a private list of banned Americans. The Magnitsky Act also provides for the US administration to compile a closed list of Russian officials subject to visa bans.

Russia's deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, was quoted Saturday as saying that the two countries' lists differed in fundamental aspects. "On the Russian list, including the closed part, are people actually responsible for the legalisation of torture and indefinite detention of prisoners in Guantanamo, for arrests and unjust sentences for our countrymen," he reportedly said.

The latest exchange between Moscow and Washington comes ahead of a visit to Russia by the White House's national security adviser, Tom Donilon, later this month.

After announcing the US list on Friday, a State Department official stressed that the administration was merely "complying with its legislative requirements". "Our approach to Russia is to seek co-operation on matters of mutual interest while speaking openly about our differences," acting deputy spokesperson Patrick Ventrell said.

John Yoo banned from entering Russia?

Maybe a trip to the International Criminal Court can be arranged instead.

Jan Klimkowski Wrote:
Quote:"What about ordering a village of resistants to be massacred? ... Is that a power that the president could legally -"
"Yeah," Yoo replied, according to a partial transcript included in the report. "Although, let me say this: So, certainly, that would fall within the commander-in-chief's power over tactical decisions."
"To order a village of civilians to be [exterminated]?" the OPR investigator asked again.
"Sure," said Yoo.

Lidice.

Oradour-sur-Glane.

Kortelisy.

Sant'Anna di Stazzema.

Notorious examples of the Nazi massacre of entire villages.

John Yoo has revealed himself, and the regime he served, as sharing the Nazi Weltanschauung.

Whilst MSM ignores the story in favour of celebrity sex scandals.
"It means this War was never political at all, the politics was all theatre, all just to keep the people distracted...."
"Proverbs for Paranoids 4: You hide, They seek."
"They are in Love. Fuck the War."

Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

"Ccollanan Pachacamac ricuy auccacunac yahuarniy hichascancuta."
The last words of the last Inka, Tupac Amaru, led to the gallows by men of god & dogs of war
Reply
#4

Russia finds Magnitsky posthumously guilty of fraud

A court in Moscow has found late Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky guilty of tax fraud.
Magnitsky was arrested in 2008 after accusing officials of tax fraud but was later himself accused of those crimes.
His death in custody a year later led to a major diplomatic dispute between Russia and the United States.
William Browder, the CEO of London-based Hermitage Capital Management which Magnitsky represented, was also accused of tax fraud.
'Magnitsky act'Russian prosecutors had asked Moscow's Tverskoi district court to convict Mr Magnitsky and then immediately dismiss the case because of his death.
It is believed to be the first time in Soviet or Russian history that a defendant was tried posthumously.
Mr Magnitsky's relatives regard the case as illegal.

After reporting the allegations to the authorities, he was himself detained on suspicion of aiding tax evasion.Employed as an auditor for Hermitage, Mr Magnitsky uncovered what he described as a web of corruption involving Russian tax officials, including the alleged theft of more than $200m (£125m).

He had pancreatitis and died in custody in 2009, but an investigation by Russia's presidential council on human rights concluded that he had been severely beaten and denied medical treatment.
Last December, a Russian court acquitted a prison doctor accused of negligence over Mr Magnitsky's death.
The Russian prosecutors were also pressing for Mr Browder to be sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison on the same tax fraud charges.
The US-born fund manager, who is now a British citizen, denied the charges.
He spearheaded efforts in the US to put pressure on Russia over the Magnitsky case.
Last year, the US passed the Magnitsky Act, blacklisting Russian officials accused of human rights violations.
In response, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law barring Americans from adopting Russian orphans.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-23265423
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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