Published: Fri, June 01, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

British Vladimir Putin critic 'arrested in Spain on Russian warrant'

British Vladimir Putin critic 'arrested in Spain on Russian warrant'

Mr Browder, a US-born British national, has been a thorn in the side of the Russian authorities for more than a decade after he tried to expose the "looting" of his investments in the country by corrupt officials.

The act was named after Mr Browder's former lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, who uncovered an alleged tax fraud in Moscow - and died in a Russian prison in 2009.

Browder has been a driving force behind the U.S.'s Magnitsky Act sanctions against Russian oligarchs, and his book, Red Notice, alleges corruption that goes up to the highest levels of the Russian government, including Vladimir Putin himself.

"Browder had an worldwide arrest warrant issued by Russian Federation against him and that was the reason he was arrested", a Spanish National Police spokesperson told CNN.

Ivan Cherkasov, Browder's co-defendant, also was given an eight-year sentence in absentia. In 2013, Browder had been sentenced to the same term in a separate case, but the aggregate term is the same nine years of imprisonment. He has dismissed the accusations. They could try to assassinate me on the street.

However, the press service of the Spanish National Police did not officially confirm or deny the reports.

But there were multiple accounts about how the confusion arose, and why Mr Browder was detained. "He is a British citizen and we will establish the full facts ASAP".

Browder however tweeted that Interpol had intervened and told the police "not to honor the new Russian Interpol Red Notice", referring to the worldwide police group's list of wanted people.

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.

A few minutes later he sent another: "In the back of the Spanish police auto going to the station on the Russian arrest warrant".

"There is not, and never has been, a Red Notice for Mr Bill Browder", Interpol said in a statement.

"Browder is not wanted via Interpol channels".

"Interpol should scrutinize alerts before it puts them out through its global networks", Fair Trials chief executive Jago Russell said in an email Wednesday.

"It's all very scary", Browder told NPR's Rachel Martin last fall.

"Moscow should concentrate on bringing those responsible for the murder of Magnitsky to justice", Johnson said in a tweet.

Browder led one of the biggest investment funds in Russian Federation for 10 years before he left the country and was barred entry in 2006 as a threat to national security.

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