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13 people set free under economic amnesty so far

July 23, 2013, 16:10 UTC+3

The amnesty applies to persons convicted under 27 articles of the penal code

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MOSCOW, July 23 (Itar-Tass) - Russian business ombudsman Boris Titov said 13 people have already been set free under the economic amnesty.

"As of now, 13 people have been amnestied; eight were released from remand wards, and five from penitentiaries. The amnesty has begun," Titov told a news conference on Tuesday.

Oleg Denisenko, Deputy Chairman of the Parliament Committee for Security and Combating Corruption, who is public business ombudsman for economic amnesty, said he sees his task in "working directly with the people who believe they were made ineligible for amnesty without a reason."

"The people who believe the actions taken against them are not what they hoped for, should contact us," Denisenko said.

The amnesty resolution came into force on July 4.

President Vladimir Putin submitted the draft resolution on June 25. It called for amnestying the persons who were being prosecuted or convicted for crimes in the field of entrepreneurship, or for other crimes the first time, as well as for dropping their criminal prosecution.

"The decision about the economic amnesty is not only restoring justice. This decision is a signal to our regulatory and supervisory bodies that still maintain the psychology of the presumption of guilt of the business," Putin stressed at the Petersburg economic forum on June 21.

The amnesty applies to persons convicted under 27 articles of the penal code, including copyright law violations, illegal entrepreneurship, fraud, money laundering, tax evasion and non-repayment of loans. It also applies to the persons who were given suspended sentences or are on parole. The mandatory condition for qualifying for amnesty is meeting the obligation to return property or reimburse damages. Those who committed crimes with use of violence or threats of violence are not eligible.

The economic amnesty will be effective for six months from the day of coming into force. The number of those eligible for amnesty might range from 3,000 to 10,000.

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