On 20 May, the US Treasury Department sanctioned 12 additional Russian individuals pursuant to the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012 (the “Magnitsky Act”). The Magnitsky Act was passed following the death of Mr. Magnitsky in a Moscow prison, where he was being detained after exposing a tax fraud scheme allegedly involving Russian officials. The Magnitsky Act authorises sanctions on individuals determined by the US government to be involved in the detention, abuse or death of Mr. Magnitsky, as well as individuals responsible for gross human rights abuses against persons attempting to expose corruption in the Russian government or promote internationally recognised human rights in Russia.
Among those designated for sanctions are four prison officials, a judge, an investigatory official in the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs and four individuals related to the tax fraud scheme uncovered by Mr. Magnitsky. Additionally, the Treasury Department designated Umar Sugaipov and Musa Vakhayev for the extrajudicial killings of individuals working to expose illegal activity carried out by Russian government officials.