By JOSH LEDERMAN
WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States is slapping five Russians with sanctions under a law that lets the U.S. target violators of human rights.
The Treasury Department says it’s designating the Russians under the Magnitsky Act. Congress passed it in 2012 in response to the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. He died in prison after exposing a tax fraud scheme involving Russian officials.
Three of the five being targeted are accused of involvement in the criminal conspiracy that Magnitsky exposed. The other two are accused of “gross violations of internationally recognized human rights” in Chechnya. The Treasury says one allegedly was involved in abusing gay men in Chechnya in 2017.
The sanctions being announced Wednesday are separate from the “Global Magnitsky Act” that lets the U.S. punish human rights violators worldwide.