Magnitsky, a lawyer for a capital investment fund and 38 at the time, was jailed in 2008 after he claimed Russian officials illegally took over his fund's subsidiary companies and used them to defraud the state in a $230 million tax fraud scheme. He died a year later in a Moscow prison, and an independent inquiry, ordered by the Kremlin's human rights council, said he had been severely beaten before his death. The official investigation blamed his death on heart failure, the Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported Monday.
With no one punished in Magnitsky's death, the United States introduced a visa ban for Russian officials implicated in his death.
The posthumous trial comes after Russia's highest court ruled relatives of deceased suspects could seek to clear their names, but Magnitsky's mother, widow and legal representatives have boycotted the trial, the news agency said.