Winners of 2015 Sergei Magnitsky Human Rights Awards Announced in London at the Inaugural Ceremony
The winners of the 2015 ‘Sergei Magnitsky Human Rights Awards’ were announced in London last night:
1) Boris Nemtsov (posthumously and accepted by his daughter Zhanna Nemtsova), Russian opposition leader (Special Award for Campaigning for Democracy);
2) Guy Verhofstadt, Member of European Parliament (Campaigning European Politician Award), co-author of Magnitsky Sanctions Resolution in the European Parliament;
3) Jim McGovern, U.S. Congressman (Campaigning US Politician Award), co-author of the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act adopted by the US Congress;
4) The Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, an anti-corruption and investigative journalism NGO (Outstanding Investigative Journalism Award, accepted by Paul Radu and Roman Anin) who investigated and publicised the transnational money laundering trail from the $230 million theft uncovered by Sergei Magnitsky;
5) Andrew Rettman, European journalist with EU Observer (Outstanding European Coverage of Magnitsky Case Award) who covered political aspects of the Magnitsky case in the EU;
6) James O’Brien, British journalist, television and radio presenter, and a show host on LBC talk station (Outstanding British Coverage of Magnitsky Case Award) who shamed the British government in their weak response to the Magnitsky case;
7) Geoffrey Robertson QC, international lawyer (Outstanding Contribution to Human Rights Law Award), author of publications on Magnitsky sanctions legislation;
8) The Oslo Freedom Forum, a human rights conference platform (Best Human Rights NGO Award, accepted by Thor Halvorssen) who promoted policy debate on Magnitsky sanctions and human rights; and
9) The Hon. Irwin Cotler, former Attorney General and Justice Minister of Canada (Outstanding Contribution to Global Magnitsky Campaign), author of the Magnitsky bill in the Canadian Parliament, and chair of the Justice for Sergei Magnitsky Inter-Parliamentary Group.
The organising committee of the Global Sergei Magnitsky Human Rights Awards this year consists of activists from major international organizations, including Transparency International, The Henry Jackson Society, Fair Trials International, the Central and Eastern European Council of Canada, and the British Parliament’s All-Party Group on Anti-Corruption.
The Sergei Magnitsky Human Rights Awards, a newly-launched international human rights prize, are advanced by the Magnitsky family as a “beacon of support” for all those who fight injustice around the world and promoted by the Justice for Magnitsky Campaign.
Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian lawyer, uncovered the largest publicly-known corruption case in Russia involving the theft of $230 million, and testified about it naming complicit officials. He was arrested by some of the implicated officials, held for 358 days in pre-trial detention in torturous conditions, and killed in Russian police custody on 16 November 2009.