New York (HedgeCo.Net) – Alexander Perepilichnyy, a Russian whistleblower who died in 2012 of “natural causes,” has been found to have “traces of a rare plant poison in his stomach,” a pre-inquest hearing reported.
Perepilichnyy had received death treats after reporting that money was stolen from taxes paid by hedge fund Hermitage Capital Management in the Magnitsky affair. Sergei Magnitsky was a lawyer for the founder of Hermatige Capital, died in custody while investigating fraud among Russian officials in 2009.
The Guardian reports: “An expert in plant toxicology found traces linked to an extremely poisonous species of gelsemium in the stomach of Alexander Perepilichnyy, the hearing heard, potentially contradicting police assurances that his death in 2012 was not suspicious. He died aged 44, having previously been healthy.”
The founder of Hermatige and outspoken critic of corruption in Russia, Bill Browder, told CNBC that he also fears for his life and that if he were to be assassinated, “everyone would know who did it.”
Browder has been living in London after accusing Russian tax officials of embezzlement in 2007. Browder has been campaigning against Corruption in Russia ever since.
“His campaign has not fallen on deaf ears with the U.S. signing the Magnitsky Act into law in December 2012. The Act prohibits Russian officials thought to be connected to the death of Magnitsky from entering the U.S and using its banking system, a factor that has enraged Russia.” CNBC Reports.
“In December 2012, the Magnitsky Act was passed which imposes sanctions on Russian officials and in April 2013, they actually sanctioned 16 officials [on the U.S. OFAC sanctions list] and the Russians are apoplectic because this is such a blow to their reputation.” Browder said. “At the moment nothing keeps me protected…If I get assassinated, everyone will know who did it….It would effectively be a declaration of war with the West if they decide to kill me,” he told CNBC in London.
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