Published: Fri, June 01, 2018
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Russia critic Browder briefly detained in Spain

Russia critic Browder briefly detained in Spain

Bill Browder, a British investment banker, was detained hours after landing in Madrid by police acting on a Russian arrest warrant circulated by Interpol.

The Spanish police service said:...

A spokesperson at the Interpol Press office told CBS News on Wednesday that, "Browder has never been put on a Interpol Red notice, there have been requests made in the past, but he has never been on any Interpol Red Notice".

Browder was found guilty in absentia by a Moscow court in December of large-scale tax evasion of some 3 billion rubles ($48 million) and sentenced to nine years in prison.

This resulted in the 2012 passage of the Magnitsky Act, which allows the USA government to blacklist Russian officials "thought to be responsible" for Magnitsky's death.

William Browder, who tweeted that he was in Madrid "to give evidence to senior Spanish anti-Russian mafia prosecutor Jose Grinda", was taken to a police station on Wednesday morning.

He also shared a copy of the arrest warrant from the National Police Force Directorate General informing him of his right to remain silent, obtain a lawyer and call his family. "They won't tell me which station", Browder tweeted.

Russian Federation was accused of trying to take advantage of the fact that Mr Browder was not in Britain or the USA, from where extradition would be more hard, a source told The Times.

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US -born British investor Bill Browder, a prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin who was sentenced in absentia to 9 years in prison, has been arrested in Spain on a Russian arrest warrant.

According to the publication, the warrant for Browder's arrest had expired.

Sergei Magnitsky was an auditor who represented Hermitage, which the Russian authorities had accused of tax evasion and fraud-Browder himself was expelled from the country in 2005.

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has welcomed the release of United Kingdom -based financier William Browder after a brief detention by police in Spain.

The Magnitsky Act returned to the headlines in 2017 after it emerged that a lawyer supporting the Russian government's position had met senior figures in Donald Trump's USA presidential campaign, including Trump's son and son-in-law.

Mr Johnson said "Moscow should concentrate on bringing those responsible for the murder of Mr Magnitsky to justice".

In March Mr Browder told the Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee that he believed the Russian government wanted him dead.

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