US authorities seek forfeiture of NYC property in fraud uncovered by Russian lawyer

Federal authorities are seeking forfeiture of New York City real estate in a fraud they say was uncovered by a whistle-blowing Russian lawyer who later died behind bars.

The U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan announced on Tuesday that it has filed a civil forfeiture complaint. It names nine corporations holding four luxury residences, two high-end office spaces and other property.

The complaint alleges that the corporations sought to launder some of the proceeds of a $230 million Russian tax fraud scheme by buying property in Manhattan.

Attorney Sergei Magnitsky was arrested in 2008 after accusing Russian police of corruption. He died in prison the next year, allegedly after being beaten and denied medical treatment.