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Bill on criminal liability of terrorists’ relatives submitted to Russia’s Duma

January 09, 2014, 20:38 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, January 09. /ITAR-TASS/. A bill on criminal liability of terrorists’ close relatives, initiated by MP Roman Khudyakov of the Liberal Democratic Party /LDPR/ parliamentary faction, was submitted to the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, on Thursday.

Khudyakov suggested amending the Russian Criminal Code with a new clause making the close relatives of the individuals committing terrorist acts liable to criminal responsibility. In accordance with the amendments, in case a crime against public security is committed, the offender’s close relations shall be subjected to criminal responsibility even after his or her death.

Khudyakov says that at present in the criminal law “there is a wide gap between the degree of threat that a committed crime poses for the society and the punishment for it.”

“Year after year, the terror attacks have been increasing in number and persons who commit them carry on living with a sense of impunity,” the MP writes in his explanatory note to the bill. “Moreover, suicide offenders often take up the opportunity to carry out an act of terror and blow themselves up for a grand sum of money their relatives will receive afterwards.”

Thus, Khudyakov believes it necessary to rise the prison term on the Criminal Code’s terrorism-related articles up to 15-25 years along with introducing additional penalties -- the property confiscation into the benefit of the Russian government or into the benefit of the victims to compensate them the property damage or moral harm as well as ban on crossing the borders of the Russian Federation and the bank account arrest resulting in cash withdrawals.

Simultaneously, the draft law envisages the appending of terrorism-related articles with some other penalties like the withholding of special, military or honorary titles, class rank or state awards, as “persons encroaching on Russia’s public security don't deserve these state awards, ranks or titles.”

“It is worthwhile mentioning that Israeli authorities solve the problem of terrorism in the most radical way: the house sheltering a terrorist’s family /or some other person assisting a crime against public security/ is subject to being pulled down,” the Russian MP said. “These measures compel a would-be terrorist to think not only about himself or herself but also about the family, as such activity drives his or her family to the verge of starvation and taints its reputation irreparably.”

At the end of the year, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law a bill imposing new measures to counteract terrorism, which set up a mechanism of compensations for the damage caused by terrorists by making their relatives pay for it, as well as to introduce longer prison terms -- up to 20 years -- for founding a terror community or organisation.

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