On April 7, 2022, legislative proposal № 102053-8 that provides amendments to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation establishing responsibility for the implementation of sanctions adopted against the Russian Federation within the country was submitted to the State Duma of the Russian Federation for consideration.
This bill provides amendments to the Part 2 of Article 201 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. The proposed amendments suggest that the law will be formulated like that:
The use by a person performing management functions in a commercial or any other organization of his powers contrary to the legitimate interests of this organization and for the purpose of extracting benefits and advantages for himself or other persons or harming other persons, if this act entailed causing significant harm to the rights and legitimate interests of citizens or organizations or the legally protected interests of society or the state and committed in order to execute the decision of a foreign state, the union of foreign states or an international organization on the introduction of restrictive measures against the Russian Federation.
It is proposed to apply the already existing sanction for committing the crime that is described in the Part 2 of Article 201 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation:
- Fine of up to one million rubles or in the amount of the convicted person's salary or other income for a period of up to five years or without it,
- Mandatory work for up to five years with or without deprivation of the right to hold certain positions or engage in certain activities for up to three years,
- Imprisonment for up to ten years with deprivation of the right to hold certain positions or engage in certain activities for up to three years.
Thus, this crime assigns into the category of grave crimes with the possibility of applying a ten-year statute of limitations for prosecution.
According to the authors of the legislative proposal, the introduction and compliance with sanctions is the responsibility of those states and unions that impose them. The explanatory note states that it is unacceptable to restrict the rights and freedoms of individuals within the Russian Federation by applying these sanctions, and therefore officials who commit such actions should be brought to criminal responsibility.
Thus, abuse of authority committed in order to implement restrictive measures against the Russian Federation is equated to abuse that entailed grave consequences. Moreover, a possible business amnesty will not be applied to this composition, which is currently also in the status of a project
(No. 88312-8 and No. 88350-8) and assumes exemption from punishment only under Part 1 of Article 201 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation.
Firstly, companies that are branches of foreign legal entities should pay attention to this novel; companies that receive the necessary materials and components from abroad, as well as those that are otherwise dependent on foreign companies. It should be noted that each situation is now becoming unique and requires assessment in order to minimize possible risks.
Аuthors: Andrey TUZOV, Counsel and Head of White Collar Crime Practice in St. Petersburg
Svetlana ZHELUDKOVA, Associate of White Collar Crime Practice