First of all, it is necessary to find out what is understood in modern Russia by the humanization of legislation? If you turn to legal science, the humanization of legislation can be called the process of reforming criminal law and law enforcement practice aimed at improving the level of human security, ensuring equality and fairness in the field of law enforcement, proportionality of punishment and unlawful acts. As part of the humanization of criminal law, the possibility of expanding the grounds that give the right to exemption from criminal liability is implied. In addition, conditions are created for the replacement of real deprivation of liberty with alternative measures of punishment, including conditional punishment, fines, correctional labor.
The need for humanization of Russian legislation is obvious. First of all, it is explained by an extremely large number of prisoners held in Russian correctional colonies and pre-trial detention centers. Not all of them committed those acts for which it would really be worth depriving them of their freedom. It should also be recalled that all prisoners are kept at public expense, that is, at the expense of taxpayers. Meanwhile, a far more useful measure in some cases would be to award fine or corrective labor. Then the convicts would bring tangible income to the state or pay compensation to the parties affected by their actions, and not be kept for several years at public expense in places of detention.
In fact, the Russian state has never been distinguished by an overhuman attitude towards prisoners. Therefore, when in the country, including at the highest level, the topic of mitigating criminal legislation in order to humanize it, the two main factors that could be the reasons for such a change in the legal policy of the state began to be actively discussed. First of all, these are financial and economic considerations. Indeed, in the face of a worsening economic situation in the country, it is not economically advantageous to keep in places of imprisonment thousands of “alimentists” or those convicted under other non-dangerous articles. Secondly, Russia seeks to comply with international standards, and the humanization of criminal law and law enforcement practice is one of the recent world trends.
Imprisonment in Russia is overcrowded with people who have committed minor crimes. For such crimes, fair punishments could be fines or correctional labor, but people are sent to prisons at public expense. In addition, the punishment of real deprivation of liberty contributes to the criminalization of people convicted of minor crimes. “Alimentschik” or a person who got into a fight with someone on the street (without serious consequences) falls into an environment where professional criminals are being held with him who are the generators and popularizers of the ideology of the criminal world. What is so good about it?
The draft law on the humanization of legislation provided for the decriminalization of a number of acts for which criminal liability had previously been provided. These include cases that qualify for articles h. 1 Art. 116 (beatings) h. 1 Art. 119 (the threat of murder or the infliction of grievous bodily harm), including 1, 2 Art. 157 (alimony evasion), h. 3 Art. 327 (using a fake document). Every year, 130-140 thousands of people were condemned under these articles. Of course, not all of the convicts received real terms of imprisonment, but the majority acquired criminal convictions, which then had a negative effect on their future life, first of all - on their professional implementation. The listed articles of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation were the first candidates for decriminalization.
At the plenum of the Supreme Court, the chairman Vyacheslav Lebedev noted that up to 90% of the criminal cases before the courts are domestic crimes, about half of which are not related to danger to life, dignity, or major damage. The decriminalization of only the four articles of the criminal code mentioned above (beatings, death threats, malicious evasion of alimony and falsification of documents) can reduce the number of convicts in Russia by a quarter. The legislative initiative to humanize Russian legislation towards the decriminalization of these acts was supported by the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation. 21 June 2016. The State Duma of the Russian Federation, on the third reading, adopted a bill on the decriminalization of responsibility for beatings, evasion from paying alimony, using obviously false documents and petty embezzlement. At the same time, the deputies refused to support the initiative of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation to decriminalize responsibility for the threat of murder.
Instead of criminal liability, now for those acts that will be decriminalized, administrative responsibility is provided. But only for the first time - so that a person has the opportunity to correct and stop making such mistakes. For repeated commission of the same acts criminal liability is already provided. For the first time, the accused can get off with a court fine or community service.
Most of the questions from the deputies of the State Duma of the Russian Federation, and in society as a whole, led to a proposal to decriminalize the article “Beating”. It led to concerns about a possible increase in domestic and domestic violence in Russian society. As is known, in Russia the level of domestic and domestic violence is already very high, and the decriminalization of the article “Beating” would not have contributed to its reduction. Therefore, after lengthy discussions, the State Duma deputies stopped that the article “Beating” would be partially decriminalized. Criminal liability for beatings is preserved in the following cases: 1) if the object of the crime is a close person (parents, children, spouses, brothers and sisters, grandparents, grandchildren, guardians and trustees, relatives, as well as persons leading the common household ); 2) beatings were committed out of hooligan motives, 3) beatings were dictated by political, ideological, racial, national or religious motives of hatred or hostility, or motives of hatred or hostility against any social group.
Thus, criminal liability for beatings in these cases remains. This moment, by the way, also caused a certain public discontent. In particular, many critics of changes to the criminal code have wondered why an outsider is released from criminal responsibility for beatings, but a relative can be convicted under a criminal article, for example, a parent who decided to "spank" his child for bad behavior. The All-Russian Parent Assembly even organized a series of street protests against innovations in legislation, which will be held in a number of Russian cities. The most well-known critic of the new interpretation of the article “Beating” became a member of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation Elena Mizulina. She said that the provision of relatives in the new reading of the law into a separate category discriminates against family members, contradicts the main objectives of the state family policy of the Russian Federation, as it legalizes juvenile justice and unreasonable intrusion into family affairs.
According to Mizulina, a child’s bruise will be the reason for initiating a criminal case and taking the child from the family, which will adversely affect the state of family policy in the Russian Federation. Indeed, it is not very clear why a father or mother who spanked a child can receive up to 2 years of imprisonment and acquire a previous conviction for life (which, by the way, will have a negative effect on the child himself — with convicted close relatives to him in the future in many government agencies, including the prosecutor's office, court, security agencies, law enforcement agencies), and the bully who beat the same child on the street can get off with administrative punishment and a fine of up to 40 thousand rubles.
Certain questions were caused by the transfer of non-payment of alimony to the category of administrative offenses. This caused a strong reaction from the Russian society, first of all - its female part. After all, the fear of criminal punishment is one of the very effective arguments against evading child support. But divorced parents can be reassured - for the evasion of payment of alimony, criminal liability can be avoided only for the first time, for the malicious non-payment can still shine a real term, up to one year in prison. Responsibility will be provided for evasion from the content of disabled parents.
Another innovation, which will mostly affect the domestic business, was the addition of the article 159 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Fraud”. This article is supplemented by the fifth part - “Fraud, involving deliberate non-fulfillment of contractual obligations in the field of entrepreneurial activity, if this act entailed causing significant damage”. In accordance with Part 5 Art. 159 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, now a penalty of up to 300 thousand rubles will be provided for this. The maximum punishment that can be threatened under this article is deprivation of liberty for up to five years with restriction of liberty for up to one year or without it. In the event of major damage resulting from fraud, the amount of the fine increases to 500 thousand rubles, and the maximum term of imprisonment is up to six years. Finally, in the event of particularly major damage, the perpetrator may be sentenced to a fine of 1 million rubles or imprisonment for up to 10 years. The sums that should be considered significant, large and especially large damages are also established. Considerable damage is the amount of 10 thousand rubles, large - from 3 million rubles, and especially large - from 12 million rubles. Recall that at present the thresholds for article 159 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation are 2,5 thousand rubles, 250 thousand rubles and 1 million rubles. The increase in damage thresholds under the article "Fraud" is aimed at liberalizing the article and contributes to the improvement of conditions for domestic business.
The humanization of Russian legislation is, of course, a good thing. Indeed, innocent people are serving sentences in Russian prisons, and people convicted of acts that are justly difficult to consider as socially dangerous. But it is puzzling why decriminalizing such articles as “Beatings”, both specialists of the judiciary, and deputies of legislative bodies did not pay attention to extremely harsh measures taken under the “narcotic” 228 article of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. Of course, drug addiction is a terrible disease and social flaw, it is simply necessary to fight it in all possible ways. But is the justification for storing drugs (including the so-called “light drugs”) for the storage of murder or rape? Approximately half of Russian prisoners are currently serving their sentences under a “narcotic” article, and, as you can easily guess, these are not drug barons or even large dealers, but small distributors and even ordinary drug addicts, who happened to be “dose” in the hands of law enforcement officers. organs.
It is among those convicted under this article that there are a large number of completely random people, including very young, 18-20-year-olds, yesterday’s schoolchildren and students, whose whole fault lies in the fact that they “indulged” or even tried to indulge in some kind trash For several years spent in prison (and this may be five or ten years), young people turn into hardened criminals, and often into complete drug addicts (it’s no secret that drug addiction takes place in Russian prisons). A young man convicted of 8-10 years for drug possession loses the best years of his life, becomes a socially unadapted member of society and is likely to commit a new crime.
The fight against drug addiction can only be successful when there is real work in two directions. The first is the eradication of social prerequisites for the spread of drug addiction, which implies the improvement of work with young people, the improvement of social and living conditions of the population. The second is the overlapping of the channels for transporting drugs to the territory of the Russian Federation and the harsh opposition of real drug mafia, and not to drug addicts - loners and small dealers. Otherwise, the Russian prisons will be filled with ordinary drug addicts, and the real movers of the criminal business will remain at liberty and will only increase their income, including at the expense of the same prisoners.