The Interior Ministry has awarded officers connected to the investigation of a tax evasion case against Hermitage Capital lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died in pretrial detention last year, Magnitsky's supporters said Wednesday.
Interior Ministry investigator Oleg Silchenko, who was a leading investigator in the Magnitsky case, was named “Best Investigator,” while his superior Natalya Vinogradova was recognized as an “Honored Interior Ministry Official,” Magnitsky's supporters said in a statement.
Both were handed the awards by Deputy Interior Minister Alexei Anichin, the Interior Ministry reported on its web site.
Artyom Churikanov, who also investigated the Magnitsky case, was commended for his “contribution to the service's interest.”
Another investigator, Pavel Karpov, whom Magnitsky had implicated in a scheme to embezzle state funds, was also named “Best Investigator.”
Magnitsky, arrested on tax charges, died of health problems, but his supporters said he was intentionally denied medical help and the case against him was fabricated by corrupt officials whom he had accused of embezzling state funds.