Monday, May 14, 2018

Draft Russian Law Against Assisting Sanctions to Be Used to Block Investigations into Elite Crimes, Gudkov Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, May 14 – A draft bill backed by United Russia that would impose criminal sanctions on any Russian who helps the sanctions regime will have the effect, quite possibly intended, of blocking any investigation into crimes by members of the Putin elite, according to opposition politician Dmitry Gudkov.

            On his Facebook page today, Gudkov says that the measure is written in such a broad- brush way -- for the text, see – that the powers that be could employ it against anyone who tries to expose crimes by members of the Putin elite (

            That is because, he argues, its provisions mean that exposing such crimes could become the basis for the imposition or continuation of Western sanctions and thus put anyone who conducted them at risk of being subject to the draconian fines and even prison time the measure introduces (

            Although Gudkov does not say it, this is one more example of the way the Kremlin uses law-like measures to violate the Russian Constitution and engage in the illegal suppression of the rights of Russian people and to confuse some in the West by introducing a law nominally about one thing that the Russian powers that be will use for other purposes. 

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