Browder, Magnitsky – a very Russian puzzle



The Skripal attempted assassinations have brought the Sergei Magnitsky affair back into the headlines, as well as Deutsche Bank scandal, money-laundering suspect Russian funds into the New York property market, which may impact on the Mueller Investigation.

Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer, imprisoned after reporting officials for major fraud and died as a result of a beating. (More Magnitsky details in old post below.)

His former employer financier Bill Browder is still fighting his corner, relentlessly lobbying governments to sanction corrupt Russians laundering their money in the West. His book Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s Number 1 Enemy is being made into a film – Amal Clooney is his lawyer.

Browder, who was deported and had his Moscow investment fund expropriated by corrupt officials, said in an interview (below): ‘The reality is that the entire Russian government is the mafia.’ He describes it as a ‘gangster state.’ And he gave evidence this week to a UK Commons select committee and said: “I believe they want to kill me. They haven’t figured out a way yet where they can kill me and get away with it.”

His Magnitsky Act, intended to impose visa sanctions and asset freezes on corrupt officials, has now been introduced in seven countries including Britain, the US and Canada. As a result he lives in a “warzone”, receiving numerous death threats: text messages and voicemails from unregistered Moscow numbers.

A few years ago the Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev told reporters in a briefing: ‘it is a shame Sergei Magnitsky is dead and Bill Browder is still alive and running around’. In 2015, he says, US intelligence authorities alerted him to an illegal rendition plot being formulated against him.

Browder, born 23 April 1964 Chicago, Illinois, is a Sun, Jupiter, Mercury in Taurus trine Uranus Pluto in Virgo – suited to the money business, stubborn, rebellious, not one to budge easily; especially with Saturn in Pisces opposing his Uranus Pluto. His Mars in pro-active Aries is under assault from a tr Pluto square, 2017/18, finishing this September/October, which is not only frustrating but also high-risk.

His relationship chart with Putin is stressed and aggravated with a Yod of Mars sextile Saturn inconjunct Sun. And it will be under extraordinary pressure in 2018/19 with tr Pluto square the composite Sun. Browder’s Mars opposes Putin’s Saturn Neptune in Libra and squares Putin’s Uranus – so he will be a thorn in Putin’s flesh.

Despite Putin being a walkover for this election he does not look remotely happy or clear headed with tr Pluto moving to square his Neptune from late March till late 2019 – which tends to be devastating and scandal-prone.

The Labour MP Yvette Cooper, chairwoman of the home affairs select committee has pressed this week for police to reopen investigations into 14 suspicious deaths in Britain linked to Russia in recent years. This would include Russian financier Alexander Perepilichnyy, who died while jogging in the UK in 2012, after handing information to Browder’s firm with information on the people behind Magnitsky’s murder. Despite US intelligence agencies saying there was Russian involvement in his death, the Surrey Police ruled out murder.

July 25 2017 Post.   The drip drip of toxic info keeps coming about the Trump dynasty’s Russia connection. This is just background about one, now deceased, piece of a jigsaw that is slowly coming together, involving Russian money-laundering through the New York property market and through the German Deustche Bank, already under investigation for same, whom certain Trumps had significant dealings with and loans therefrom.

Sergei Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer/accountant, arrested after accusing Russian officials of tax fraud. He died a year later in custody after beatings in 2009. As a result of his death, the Magnitsky Act came into being which put banking restrictions on Russian officials implicated in human rights abuses. It’s those sanctions which Putin is keen/desperate to get lifted. The lawyer involved in last year’s meet with Don Jnr and Jared Kushner is heavily involved with the main players in the above.

Magnitsky, born 8 April 1972 in Odessa, Ukraine, was an Aries Sun in a rebellious/activist opposition to Uranus. He also had a communicative Air Grand Trine of Pluto trine Saturn Venus Mars trine North Node (Moon) in Aquarius with Pluto opposition Mercury – so a crusader (NNode in Aquarius), gutsy with Pluto Saturn Mars, though maybe not too practical. He also had Neptune opposition Saturn Mars Venus which formed the boundary of his Half Grand Sextile – idealistic, slightly fanatical or head in the clouds, but talented.

When he died tr Neptune was squaring his Solar Arc Uranus opposition Sun; tr Saturn was just over the conjunction to his Pluto and trine his North Node.

His reforming Uranus was conjunct Vladimir Putin’s rigid authoritarian Saturn (Sun Neptune) with Magnitsky’s Saturn Venus Mars falling in Putin’s secret 8th conjunct his Gemini Moon so arousing anger.

This year the Magnitsky family lawyer fell/was pushed from a 4th storey window and seriously injured.

Add on: As ever with any story involving Russia, high finance and money-laundering the waters get exceeding muddy.

A slightly different view from:

There are however undisputed facts.

  1. Magnitsky was beaten in prison, denied medical treatment and died.
  2. Russian money-laundering through US and indeed UK property deals is an accepted fact.
  3. Deutsche Bank in May 2017 agreed to pay $41 million to settle Federal Reserve allegations that its U.S. operations failed to maintain adequate protections against money laundering, the latest in a string of fines that have cost the German lender billions of dollars. Deutsche Bank has recently reached settlements with the U.K. and New York State’s Department of Financial Services over trades that allegedly helped wealthy Russians move some $10 billion out of the country.

9 thoughts on “Browder, Magnitsky – a very Russian puzzle

  1. Britain’s most effective sanction against Russia is the significant amount of Russian wealth laundered in this country. Will a sleazy and incompetent Tory government really compel their friends and benefactors, the City spivs, estate agents, bankers et al, who are in the main responsible for the dirty money in the UK, to freeze those assets? It’s laughable…

    • The Times and Independent are attacking the Govt/Tory Party for soaking up Russian oligarch donations. And May is getting a well-earned kicking for shutting up Boris at a Cabinet meeting when he raised the matter of Salisbury. She weaselled around as Home Secy over the Litvinenko death but she may not manage it this time round.

  2. Hi;

    Marjorie, I’m curious: you write about Russia and Putin. Did you ever get in trouble for that? Did you ever receive any sort of threat? Or is Astrology considered in such light way (by the world and Russia) that you were always safe? Sometimes I consider talking – publicly, online – about certain big organizations but, honestly, fear kind of stops me.

    So, was there any problems for you, ever?

    • No, not on the Russian thing. Newspaper columnists have been much more savage than me about the affair. The only nasty twitter I ever got was on a piece I had written attacking Assad, for heaven’s sake. Libel concerns me sometimes since UK laws are tight, so you do have to watch if accusing organizations of corruption. If you can’t prove it don’t print it is the motto.
      I do live in awe of those in dictatorships who speak out – that is a dangerous exercise.

  3. I don’t know what to make of Browder. His grandfather was a Stalin approved leader to The US Communist Party. He closed his eyes on disappearance of thousands of US Citizens, his comrades, in Soviet Union in 1937 and 1938, when Stalin purged best part of the international communists who’d come to build Soviet Union. Yet, with this family history, Bill Browder chose to work in Russia when it was clearly ran by either thugs or very recent ex-KGB agents – and these things sometimes overlapped. Why? I think he may have thought he can trust on very high level protection there. Old Cheka/KGB connections, most likely.

    I do hope his “conversion” is genuine, but honestly, Magnitsky Act isn’t as devastating to Kremlin businesses he is selling it as. Putin’s most trusted bagmen have never had public roles in Kremlin.

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