William Browder of Hermitage Capital Management testified before a Congressional Commission today on the death of his lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, and the failure of the Russian authorities to investigate or prosecute any of the people responsible for his fatal mistreatment.
Here’s one quote from the press release going around:
What happened to Sergei reflects the prevailing attitude among judges and law enforcement officers in Russia today, which can best be described as “legal cynicism.” Investigators and prosecutors act in a legal vacuum subject to no judicial checks. The judges create an appearance of impartial oversight and mediation but in fact exercise no restraint on the power of the Interior Ministry… An innocent person falsely accused by corrupt police officials is allowed to file complaints only to have them rejected. All petitions from the police are accepted however ludicrous or unsubstantiated they are. The presumption of innocence, a central tenet of judicial systems everywhere, is discarded from the outset.