The U.S. has sanctioned 12 Russians for human rights abuses, including officials who allegedly withheld medical care from lawyer Sergei Magnitsky who died in prison after exposing large-scale corruption in Russia.
The U.S. Treasury Department, which announced the action on Tuesday, did not link it with the confrontation between Washington and Moscow over the Ukraine crisis, which has led the U.S. to target a number of senior Russian officials with sanctions.
The Treasury said in a statement that the sanctions would freeze any U.S. assets held by the 12 individuals and bar Americans from doing business with them.
Since 2012, the U.S. has targeted Russians for human rights abuses under a law named for Russian lawyer Magnitsky, who allegedly uncovered tax fraud that involved Russian officials.
The State Department has placed 18 Russians on a public list of those affected, and a handful of other senior officials are on a list that was not made public.
Last year, Russia convicted Magnitsky of tax evasion even after his death.
The people sanctioned on Tuesday included prison doctors, the judge who oversaw his posthumous trial and a banker alleged to have masterminded the conspiracy he uncovered.
Washington Publishes Magnitsky Blacklist