US: Global Magnitsky Act Passed to Senate

Sergey MagnitskiSergei MagnitskyA United States bill which would allow authorities to bar corrupt foreign officials and those responsible for human rights abuses from entering the US and using its financial institutions has moved a step closer to possible adoption.

The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) voted unanimously to pass the Global Magnitsky Act to the Senate floor for a vote, Senator Ben Cardin announced via Twitter on Wednesday.

The law would expand the act passed by the US Congress in 2012 allowing for Russia-specific sanctions to apply globally.

The bill was passed by the SFRC to the Senate last summer, but it progressed no further at that time.

It was reintroduced in January this year by Senator Cardin along with former presidential candidate Senator John McCain.

The bipartisan Magnitsky Act of 2012 was originally intended to punish those linked to the death of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died in prison in Moscow after attempting to expose an alleged US$ 230 million tax fraud by Russian officials.

It stipulated that corrupt Russian officials could be denied entry to the US and blocked from using US financial institutions.