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You're reading: Rada to introduce criminal responsibility for slander

The Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, is to return to the legislation the notion of slander and introduce criminal responsibility for such actions.

Some 244 of the 347 MPs registered at the parliament’s session on
Tuesday, Sept. 18, voted at first reading for the bill on amendments to the
Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine on the
toughening of punishments for the infringement of the honor, dignity and
business reputation of a person.

The author of the bill, a member of the Regions Party parliamentary
faction Vitaliy Zhuravsky, registered the document in the parliament in
July. The MP proposed to introduce the notions of slander and offence to
the Criminal Code and the Criminal Procedure Code.

The document was revised in September and the notion “offence” was removed from it.

The document proposes to add Article 145-1 entitled “Slander” to the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

According to the bill, slander, or conscious spreading of
deliberately untrustworthy information that defames honor and dignity of
another person or undermine his or her business reputation, which
results in serious consequences, should be punishable by a fine of
200-500 nontaxable minimum incomes or correctional labor for up to one
year, or restraint of freedom for up to two years.

The media, investigators, prosecutors and judges should be fined for
such actions by 500-1,500 nontaxable minimum incomes or punished by
correctional labor for 1-2 years, or restraint of freedom for 2-5 years
with a ban on holding certain positions for 1-3 years, according to the
bill.

The same actions connected with unfounded accusation of a person of
committing a grave or especially grave crime should be punishable by
restraint of freedom for 2-5 years or imprisonment for up to three years
with a ban on holding certain positions for 1-3 years, reads the
document.

The bill also proposes to amend Item 1 of Part 1 of Article 477 of
the Criminal Procedure Code with the phrase “under Article 145-1
(slander)” after the words “under Article 145 (illicit disclosure of
medical secrecy).”

The document will take effect on December 1, 2012.

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