The Klyuev Organized Crime Group
has stolen at least $800 million from the Russian people with the aid and protection of the Russian government. The group is responsible for the $230 million theft, uncovered by Sergei Magnitsky, which remains the largest single tax theft in Russian history.
The group members are involved in violent crimes
, including kidnapping
, extortion and killings. Many of the group’s most important members are Russian officials in law enforcement, FSB, the successor to the KGB, the Tax Ministry, and judges. The group also comprises organised criminals from across the former Soviet Union. The group launders its criminal proceeds through the international banking system, and have systematically used banks and companies in Cyprus, Moldova, Switzerland and the UK.
The group has a long history of using its members in law enforcement to blame its crimes on people who are dead or who die under suspicious circumstances.
The Russian government has chosen to protect the group from charges of theft of state funds, false arrest, torture, and murder. Because the Klyuev Organized Crime Group contains members
of the Russian government and because the highest authorities in Russia are protecting it, it is no longer possible to consider the group independent of the Russian state.
The Klyuev Organized Crime Group
has the full cooperation and protection of high ranking Russian government officials. Its crimes are state sanctioned.
Its members are untouchable in Russia.
The exoneration of the group for the $230 million tax theft has been sanctioned at the highest levels of the Russian government: by Oleg Logunov, Deputy Chief of the Interior Ministry’s Investigative Department, and Viktor Grin, Deputy General Prosecutor of Russia.
The Kremlin has made it the official foreign policy of the Russian Federation to protect the group and the assets they have accumulated and hidden abroad from international sanctions.
On May 7, 2012, President Vladimir Putin signed his first executive order on foreign affairs where he officially declared that fighting Magnitsky sanctions is now one of Russia’s top foreign policy goals. In the executive order President Putin said: "Hereby I instruct to carry out active work to prevent the introduction of unilateral extraterritorial sanctions by the USA against Russian legal entities and individuals."
Latest news and blog posts
The American Interest. I’m sure some readers are growing weary of the back-and-forth on Russia over the past few months, but I hope they will indulge me in one more response to Thomas Graham’s reply to me and other critics of his original piece.
Sunday Times. An itinerant, hard-drinking Latvian pensioner has emerged as one of the world’s richest men — on paper.
Sunday Times. A hard-drinking pensioner in Latvia has been revealed as the frontman for a network of scandal-hit companies.
Washington Post. Anything Russia can do, you can do, too. That is the message Washington is sending to repressive, power-hungry governments around the world.
International Bar Association. Russia’s engagement with the OECD and WTO means rule of law reform should be imminent. Yet, the worst excesses of government control and human rights abuses suggest otherwise.
The FCPA Blog. A Russian journalist who reported on the tax fraud uncovered by murdered lawyer Sergei Magnitsky has been awarded the 2013 Knight International Journalism Award.