On 17 May 2011 the federal law on penalties for accepting bribes came into force. The severity of the penalty depends on the size of the bribe.

There are four categories of bribes:

  • simple (up to RUB 25,000);
  • significant (from RUB 25,000 – RUB 150,000);
  • large (from RUB 150,000 – RUB 1 million); and
  • exceptionally large (more than RUB 1 million).  

The penalty for accepting a bribe is a multiple of the amount of the bribe, or a multiple of the convicted individual’s salary or other form of income received for the period up to five years. The maximum fine may reach RUB 1 million. The penalty for bribery may alternately result in imprisonment. Fines based on multiples are also levied on those guilty of offering bribes. Additionally, the criminal law indicates a new violation: mediation in bribery, which is the indirect offering of bribes and the facilitating of such transfers.

As we reported in the March 2011 edition of the Legal Digest, this law is one of the anticorruption measures presented by President Medvedev in February of this year. The country’s legislators are seeking to make the acceptance of bribes very costly by tying the penalty to the size of the bribe.

[Federal Law No. 97 “On Amending the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation and the Code of the Russian Federation on Administrative Violations of the Law in Connection with Improving State Administration in Fighting Corruption”, dated 4 May 2011]