Russian Colonel at centre of Magnitsky death free and enjoying multi-millionaire lifestyle
Lt. Col. Artem Kuznetsov, 38, the man accused by the late anti-corruption lawyer Sergei Magnitsky of colluding in the theft of $230 million from the Russian state is exposed by an investigation which has turned up purchase of property, cars and luxury trips abroad.
The investigation by friends of Magnitsky, led by the Jamison Firestone, the founder and managing partner of the law firm that employed him drew on the resources of liberal newspaper Novaya Gazeta and posted a video on YouTube which promises to be the first of a series on Col Kuznetsov and his colleagues that the group has dubbed the Russian Untouchables.
A statement from Firestone says, “ Russian Interior Ministry officers responsible for the torture and death of Sergei Magnitsky, the 37 year-old Russian anti-corruption lawyer who had exposed their role in the theft of $230 million from the Russian people, have been caught red-handed. In a video released today onyoutube.com, see the evidence of how much money they received and how they are spending it. See the shocking video of how Russian public servants have turned on the people they were sworn to protect. Follow them as they falsely imprison, murder, and make lots of money.”
The video – shown here on BSR-Russia is available in Russian at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0QYb2b6yR8 and in English at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZB3YoAvEro
“The brutality of Magnitsky’s false arrest and murder in custody is compounded by the way his killers have profited from the crimes he had exposed and their absolute impunity. More than six months after Magnitsky’s death, no one has been brought to justice for his murder. Nor has a single official has been prosecuted for the embezzlement of $230 million, Firestone’s statement says.
Firestone runs his business in Russia from London, from where he has refused to return to Moscow fearing he will also be arrested and imprisoned.
Kuznetsov is alleged to have spent $3m (€2.4m, £2m) on luxury properties and cars in Moscow and surrounding areas and thousands more on luxury holidays over the past three years. The properties and cars were registered in the names of his father, mother and wife.
Mr Kuznetsov is alleged to have spent more than 322 times his annual salary on Moscow apartments and a string of luxury holidays in Dubai, Italy and Cyprus.