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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Britain Refuses to Cooperate in Browder Case

VedomostiWilliam Browder in 2008

Corrections appended

Investigators are ready totake their case against Hermitage Capital CEO Bill Browder tocourt — but theU.K. refuses toeven notify theBritish citizen, let alone extradite him.

Browder, aco-founder ofthe Hermitage Capital investment fund, is asuspect ina 500 million ruble ($15 million) tax case that landed lawyer Sergei Magnitsky injail in2008.

The case was launched against Browder immediately after his fund accused Russian police officers of working with criminals to steal his companies.

Magnitsky was added to the case eight months later and jailed immediately after he revealed that the theft of the companies was part of a serial tax fraud totaling over $337 million carried out by the same people. He died after about a year in custody.

The presidential human rights council said Magnitsky was handcuffed and beaten and left to die while awaiting emergency medical care. The Interior Ministry report says "heart failure with no sign of violence."

Last year, prosecutors reopened theMagnitsky case under anorder bythen-Prosecutor General Viktor Grin.

Hermitage has said thecase was reopened three days after theU.S. State Department announced that Grin, anofficial associated with Magnitsky's death, would be denied entry tothe United States.

Forrefusing tonotify Browder, Britain has cited theEuropean Convention onMutual Legal Assistance, which allows asovereign nation todeny assistance that could jeopardize national security.

TheRussian Interior Ministry said Tuesday that thecase would go tocourt, regardless ofwhat Britain thinks.

TheBritish denial, however, "allows thedefense tosay its rights are violated," theministry said ina statement. "It allows Browder … totell thewhole world about theinjustice being committed inthe Russian law enforcement system."

Last week, Hermitage Capital released avideo accusing Interior Ministry investigators Pavel Karpov and Artyom Kuznetsov, who arrested Magnitsky, ofhaving ties toan organized crime syndicate led byDmitry Klyuyev, owner ofUniversal Savings Bank.

TheU.S. Senate is currently considering abill tofreeze theassets of, anddeny U.S. entry to, Russian officials believed tohave fabricated charges toincarcerate Magnitsky.

Three more senior officials have been fired from the Interior Ministry in what is seen as a continuation of the reshuffle begun by newly appointed minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev.

Long-time police spokesman General Valery Gribakin, who worked alongside former minister Rashid Nurgaliyev, was sacked from his post, Interfax reported, citing the presidential press service.

According to Russian law, it is the president who officially fires and appoints police officials, regardless of their rank.

Along with Gribakin, Nikolai Ivanov, the head of the metro police, and ministry chief assistant Viktor Kamertsel were also dismissed, the presidential press service said Tuesday.

Corrections: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Magnitsky was jailed over a $230 million tax case. Two hundred thirty million dollars is what Magnitsky accused tax andpolice officials ofembezzling before he was arrested.

An earlier version of this article also misstated the first name of one of the Interior Ministry officials who arrested Magnitsky. His name is Artyom Kuznetsov, not Anatoly.