A leading Russian anti-corruption lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky died recently in custody. It was immediately called suspicious and now there is a report that eight guards who beat him while handcuffed in a small cell. The guards reportedly forced an ambulance to wait as they beat him to death.
Magnitsky, 37, worked as a lawyer for British investment fund, Hermitage Capital.
Magnitsky’s arrest came after he accused a group of law enforcement, security and tax officials of a $230-million tax-return scam.
Magnitsky was being held in Sailor’s Silence (Matrosskaya Tishina) prison, which has a notorious reputation for abuse.
He died on November 16, 2009, but no one has been punished for the alleged homicide. The doctor at the prison says that Magnitsky was diagnosed as having a nervous breakdown because he said “they want to kill me.” She called the guards who allegedly proceeded to kill him. I guess he was not having a nervous breakdown after all.
Nevertheless, last year, the chief of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, Alexander Bastrykin, declared that he would not prosecute the authorities involved because the Magnitsky’s death “was not tied with the actions of the officials conducting his legal prosecution.”
Source: LA Times