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Caribbean go-between provided shelter for far-away frauds

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Alex Shprintsen/CBC News

The tangled trail of the Magnitsky Affair, a case that’s strained U.S.-Russian relations and blocked American adoptions of Russian orphans, snakes through an offshore haven in the Caribbean. 

The death of Moscow tax attorney Sergei Magnitsky sparked international outrage. It also fueled a push to unravel secret deals that had prompted him to claim that gangsters and government insiders had stolen $230 million from Russia’s treasury.

Magnitsky and other private attorneys investigating the affair on behalf of a major hedge fund followed a path from Russia to bank accounts in Switzerland and luxury properties in Dubai — ending up at a small firm based in the British Virgin Islands that specializes in setting up offshore companies for clients who want to remain in the shadows.

This is the story of behind-the-scenes players in the Magnitsky affair — and the tale of how an offshore go-between provided shelter to fraudsters, money launderers and other shady characters from Russia, Eastern Europe and the United States.

Click through to ICIJ.org to continue reading.

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