Hundreds of Officials, MPs Prosecuted in 2012© Photo Press Service of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
MOSCOW, February 20 (RIA Novosti) - Russia’s Investigative Committee (IC) initiated criminal proceedings against more than 800 state and government officials last year, including about 600 lawmakers on different levels, committee chief Alexander Bastrykin said on Wednesday.
“Last year we took legal action against some 600 deputies and elected heads of municipalities and local self-government bodies, 19 deputies of regional legislatures, 29 electoral commission members, six judges and 100 investigators from different agencies, including, sadly, 15 Investigative Committee officers,” he said.
The IC investigated a total of about 200,000 crimes last year, with 89,000 cases completed and sent to court.
The clear-up rates for crimes involving the infliction of grievous bodily harm, as well as rape, are over 86 percent countrywide, Bastrykin said.
Russia's Security Council head Nikolai Patrushev said on Tuesday state security and law enforcement agencies, including the IC, will retain their investigative functions for now.
A presidential decree currently being drafted, will redistribute investigative functions as part of comprehensive law enforcement reform, he said. The reform aims to make crime investigations more effective and boost the clear-up rate, improve professional training and make investigations more objective and independent.
Patrushev also said the Investigative Committee’s functions will be expanded to include investigating crimes that are currently handled by the Interior Ministry and the Federal Drug Control Service.
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News that Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin would resign in order to run for the mayoral election in September came as quite a shock. Sobyanin’s political potential is fairly dubious, not to mention his approval ratings. He has not finished many of the projects he initiated and the electoral effect from these projects is expected to come a bit later than September 2013. Sobyanin’s opponents were not entirely unprepared for this blitzkrieg.