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Yanukovych signs law on humanization of responsibility for economic crimes

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Dec. 13, 2011, 6:22 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

Viktor Yanukovych has signed a law on the humanization of responsibility for violations in economic activities.
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Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has signed a law on the humanization of responsibility for violations in economic activities, the head of the main department for the judiciary at the Presidential Administration, Andriy Portnov, said at a briefing on Tuesday. "Persons convicted of economic crimes may pay a fine and be released from prison... Those who have the status of suspects and defendants and such a measure of restraint as detention was chosen for them, may pay bail and also be freed," Portnov said.

"The issue concerns thousands of people... But the law clearly stipulates that the state budget should receive the proper compensation," he said.

Portnov said that the need to adopt the law was triggered by the excessive interference of law enforcement agencies in the activity of economic entities and, consequently, by the existence of undue obstacles to entrepreneurial activities.

"The unreasonably excessive level of the criminalization of violations in the sphere of economic activity and the unreasonably wide range of legally established grounds for using punishment in the form of imprisonment for crimes committed in the economic sphere are leading to the numerous cases of abuse by police while calling entrepreneurs to justice," Portnov said.

He said that this situation created unnecessary obstacles to business development, worsened the investment climate in the state and at the same time did not contribute to the proper compensation of damage caused by unlawful acts. "Today it is obviously necessary to bring the provisions of domestic legislation in this area into line with European standards, according to which the priority is given to financial sanctions for committing the specified offenses," Portnov said
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