5 Mar 2022 23:00

Putin backs decriminalization of economic offenses

MOSCOW. March 5 (Interfax) - Businesspeople should no longer be prosecuted for economic crimes and this is already a decided matter, President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with female crew members from Russian airline companies on Saturday.

"I consider, I support, in principle, such a decision has been made already, people should be rid of the threat of criminal prosecution for economic crimes, more so if [they] reimbursed for damage," Putin said.

In the current circumstances, "there is only way out: maximum economic freedom for people doing business," he said.

"We already made a number of decisions on the matter, the government is working to extend these support measures. Including lifting various restrictions on business activity. This is related to the liberalization of our criminal legislation," Putin said.

Separately, he commented on criminal cases over tax crimes. "With regard to tax crimes. Yes, of course, these are unacceptable wrongdoings but we have agreed that criminal cases, in this instance, should only be opened on the basis of materials from the tax authority. And this is what we will do certainly, go down precisely this path," Putin said.

"For those doing business, this is extremely important, people know this. To be honest, business representatives have long been putting questions of this kind. So, I think they will hear this, and appreciate this accordingly," he added.