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Journalist honored for reporting Russian graft

Russian journalist Roman Anin (photo courtesy of the International Center for Journalists)A Russian journalist who reported on the tax fraud uncovered by murdered lawyer Sergei Magnitsky has been awarded the 2013 Knight International Journalism Award.

Roman Anin writes for Novaya Gazeta

He began a series of reports in 2011 that told how a $230 million tax fraud uncovered by Magnitsky was orchestrated.

Anin also reported that similar frauds continued after Magnitsky’s death.

Magnitsky was jailed without trial after he said Russian officials were helping gangsters collect fraudulent tax refunds. He died after nearly a year in jail in 2009 after being denied medical attention.

One of Anin’s articles described how tax officials connected with the frauds were later promoted to senior positions at the Russian Defense Ministry.

Five journalists at Anin’s paper, Novaya Gazeta, have been murdered for their work since 2000, according to the International Center for Journalists.

‘The Knight award recognizes excellent reporting that makes a difference in the lives of people around the world,’ the International Center for Journalists said.

The awards were announced this week.

The United States enacted a law last year imposing visa bans and asset freezes on anyone responsible for Magnitsky’s torture and death. So far, 18 Russians, including some officials, have been named under the Magnitsky Act.

In his series, Anin reported that up to $800 million stolen from the Russian treasury through the tax frauds was laundered by banks in Russia, Austria, Switzerland, Cyprus, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

Last year, he received three of the most important awards in Russian investigative journalism — the Artem Borovik award, the Youlian Semenov award, and the Andrey Sakharov award.

Anin recently collaborated with Swedish broadcaster SVT on a story that revealed alleged corruption in a deal between Swedish telecom TeliaSonera and the daughter of Uzbek President Islam Karimov.

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