MOSCOW, December 4 (RAPSI, Diana Gutsul) – The Moscow City Court has refused to forward to a cassation court an appeal filed by the mother of the late British Hermitage Capital Fund auditor Sergei Magnitsky challenging the acquittal of a former prison official, lawyer Nikolay Gorokhov told RAPSI on Wednesday.

At the center of the appeal is Dmitry Kratov, who formerly served as deputy head of Butyrka Pretrial Detention Center.

The attorney intends to appeal the legality of Kratov's acquittal despite the court's decision.

Kratov was earlier a defendant in a case dealing with Magnitsky's death.

According to investigators, Magnitsky and his accomplices stole hundreds of millions of rubles from the state budget by manipulating tax returns between September and October 2007.

In turn, Hermitage Capital maintained that it had paid 5.4 billion rubles ($162.4 million) in taxes, but the money was stolen by corporate raiders with the help of law enforcement officials.

On November 24, 2008, Magnitsky was arrested on suspicion of masterminding large-scale corporate tax evasion. He died in a Moscow pretrial detention center on November 16, 2009 after having spent a year behind bars. According to the Prosecutor General's Office, his death was caused by heart failure.

The case was closed after his death, only to be reopened later. Under Russian law, persons can be prosecuted after their death. On July 11, the Tverskoy District Court in Moscow convicted the late British Hermitage Capital Fund auditor of tax evasion.

Kratov has been accused of negligence resulting in Magnitsky's death.

On December 28, 2012, the Tverskoy District Court of Moscow acquitted the former pretrial detention center official, finding that no link was established between the actions of Kratov and Magnitsky's death.