// Worldwide reaction

Law Society Letter to President of Russia regarding death of Sergey Magnitsky

December 9, 2009

Let­ter of Law Soci­ety (UK) to Pres­i­dent of Rus­sia 7 Decem­ber 2009

Cardin, Hastings Statement on Death of Anti-Corruption Lawyer in Russia

November 17, 2009

WASHINGTON— U.S. Sen­a­tor Ben­jamin L. Cardin (D-MD), Chair­man of the Com­mis­sion on Secu­rity and Coop­er­a­tion in Europe (U.S. Helsinki Com­mis­sion) and Co-Chairman Con­gress­man Alcee L. Hast­ings (D-FL) expressed con­cerns today about the state of the Russ­ian judi­cial sys­tem after learn­ing that anti-corruption lawyer Sergei Mag­nit­sky died Mon­day while being held in a pre-trial deten­tion facility.

I am trou­bled to learn of the recent death of Sergei Mag­nit­sky,” Chair­man Cardin said. “Mag­nit­sky was incar­cer­ated on appar­ently fab­ri­cated charges designed to end his inquiries into one of the largest cases of offi­cial cor­rup­tion in mod­ern Russ­ian his­tory. His death, while in offi­cial cus­tody, raises seri­ous ques­tions about his treat­ment and over­all con­di­tions in Russ­ian jails.”

Mr. Mag­nit­sky, 37, was a father of two chil­dren and a highly regarded pro­fes­sional, who advised Her­mitage Cap­i­tal Man­age­ment and hun­dreds of U.S. and for­eign com­pa­nies active in the Russ­ian mar­ket. He had been held on tax eva­sion charges since Nov. 24.

Her­mitage Cap­i­tal Man­age­ment CEO Bill Brow­der tes­ti­fied before the Helsinki Com­mis­sion in June and said, “The sit­u­a­tion in Rus­sia is going from ‘bad’ back to ‘hor­ri­ble’ – and it will be more than just investors who lose out in this process.”

Trag­i­cally, it appears that Mr. Brow­der was cor­rect. On top of a multi-million dol­lar cor­rup­tion scheme and a legal night­mare for cor­po­ra­tions try­ing to do hon­est work, we now mourn the death of a young lawyer who was sim­ply try­ing to stand up to a bro­ken judi­cial sys­tem,” Co-Chairman Hastings.

For video:
See the 10-minute Her­mitage video about the cor­rup­tion they faced here. Mr. Mag­nit­sky is specif­i­cally men­tioned in the video at 4:18 and 9:30.



The Com­mis­sion on Secu­rity and Coop­er­a­tion in Europe, also known as the U.S. Helsinki Com­mis­sion, is an inde­pen­dent agency of the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment charged with mon­i­tor­ing com­pli­ance with the Helsinki Accords and advanc­ing com­pre­hen­sive secu­rity through pro­mo­tion of human rights, democ­racy, and eco­nomic, envi­ron­men­tal and mil­i­tary coop­er­a­tion in 56 coun­tries. The Com­mis­sion con­sists of nine mem­bers from the U.S. Sen­ate, nine from the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, and one mem­ber each from the Depart­ments of State, Defense, and Commerce.

Politically-motivated abuses of the criminal justice system

August 7, 2009

Excerpts from the report, pub­lished by the Com­mit­tee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights on alle­ga­tions of politically-motivated abuses of the crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem in Coun­cil of Europe mem­ber states with rec­om­men­da­tions on series of steps to strengthen the inde­pen­dence of judges and pros­e­cu­tors across Europe to end politically-motivated inter­fer­ence in indi­vid­ual cases.

Inter alia the Com­mit­tee calls for a series of reforms to reduce the polit­i­cal and hier­ar­chi­cal pres­sures on judges and put an end to the harass­ment of defence lawyers in order to com­bat “legal nihilism” in the Russ­ian Fed­er­a­tion, as a pre­con­di­tion also for suc­cess­ful co-operation between Russ­ian and other Euro­pean law enforce­ment authorities.


Keeping politics out of the law

June 23, 2009

A report approved today by the Legal Affairs Com­mit­tee of the Coun­cil of Europe Par­lia­men­tary Assem­bly (PACE) has rec­om­mended a series of steps to boost the inde­pen­dence of judges across Europe to end what it calls “politically-motivated inter­fer­ence” in indi­vid­ual cases.

The report, pre­pared by Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger (Ger­many, ALDE), exposes ways that politi­cians can med­dle with the law in four coun­tries rep­re­sent­ing the prin­ci­pal types of crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem in Europe, analysing high-profile cases such as the drop­ping of the BAE fraud inves­ti­ga­tion and “cash for hon­ours” scan­dal in the United King­dom, or the sec­ond Khodor­kovsky trial, HSBC/Hermitage Cap­i­tal case and Politkovskaya inves­ti­ga­tion in Russia.

Among other things, the par­lia­men­tar­i­ans call for:

• in Rus­sia, a series of reforms to reduce the polit­i­cal pres­sures on judges and end the harass­ment of defence lawyers in order to com­bat “legal nihilism” in Russia.

  • Link

Hermitage TV

Visit “Stop the Untouchables” site

For more infor­ma­tion please visit http://russian-untouchables.com site..