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Experts discussed the moratorium on initiating criminal cases on tax structures

Experts discussed the moratorium on initiating criminal cases on tax structures

It is necessary to impose a moratorium on the initiation of cases on tax compositions, subject to the repayment of arrears in anticipation of amendments to the legislation (h. 24 Art. 144 and st. 148 Code of Criminal Procedure, Art. 148 Code of Criminal Procedure). This position was voiced by the participants of the meeting of the Expert Center for Criminal Law Policy and Enforcement of Judicial Acts of "Business Russia".

According to the survey, 73% of respondents consider the problem of “power pressure” on entrepreneurs by initiating criminal cases to be urgent, when the tax arrears have been paid in full before such a procedural decision is made. Ekaterina Avdeeva reminded, that 3 February "Business Russia" voiced this problem to the President of Russia Vladimir Putin. The proposal to refuse to initiate criminal proceedings in the event of payment of the tax arrears in full was supported and, pursuant to subparagraph "b" of paragraph 4 orders of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin 26.04.2022 No. Pr-740, The Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation drafted a law, which should be adopted soon. It involves changes to. 24 Art. 144 and st. 148 Code of Criminal Procedure, and also in st. 148 Code of Criminal Procedure. The basis for refusal to initiate a criminal case will be information about the full payment of arrears.

In order to prevent forceful pressure on tax structures, it is proposed to ask the departments to give internal explanations about the inadmissibility of initiating criminal cases with the timely and full repayment of arrears before the adoption of the above draft law. To this end, on the basis of the Expert Center, it was proposed to prepare a joint letter to the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, General Prosecutor's Office of the Russian Federation, Federal Tax Service of the Russian Federation until the adoption of the relevant federal law with a proposal to stop the established practice of initiating criminal cases in the event of, if the arrears are fully repaid before the procedural decision is made.

The participants of the meeting unanimously supported the proposed initiative.. “In anticipation of amendments to the legislation, it is necessary to adjust the law enforcement practice of initiating criminal cases when compensating tax arrears,» – clarified Member of the Board of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, Chairman of the Council for Financial, Industrial and Investment Policy Vladimir Gamza. He recalled the serious analytical work, conducted by Ekaterina Avdeeva within the framework of the Councils of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation on the financial, industrial and investment climate. According to him, the institute for preventing pressure on business needs to be improved, since it directly correlates with the development of the industrial potential of the country and the investment attractiveness of Russian regions. Vladimir Gamza confirmed the readiness of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation to join the initiatives, voiced by the Expert Center "Business Russia": “Only by joint efforts of state authorities and the business community will it be possible to eliminate the existing legal risks, improve the efficiency of the functioning system and ensure national economic security.”

The moratorium on initiating cases on tax compositions, subject to the repayment of arrears, “will encourage the debtor to repay the relevant debts” and will allow “to challenge later on both sides and in the framework of arbitration proceedings”, continued the discussion Head of the Analytical Service of Pepeliaev Group law firm, Deputy Chief Editor of the magazine for professionals in taxation "Nalogoved" Vadim Zaripov. In his opinion, it is an important component of the criminal law policy of the state.

Besides, at the meeting it was decided to prepare a joint letter to the Federal Tax Service of Russia with a request to issue clarifications on the procedure and timing for the transfer of materials from the tax authorities based on the results of inspections to the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation. Sergey Trokhov, Head of the Department for Procedural Control over the Investigation of Tax Crimes of the Department for Procedural Control over Investigation of Certain Types of Crimes of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, and Vitaly Zvankov, Head of the Legal Department of the Federal Tax Service of Russia, recalled, what's in March 2022 year the law was passed, according to which the materials of the tax authorities are the only reason for initiating a criminal case. The exception is the cases, provided for by Art.. 199.2, when an entrepreneur hides money or property, from which taxes are to be collected, fees, insurance premiums.

For its part, the Federal Tax Service is also preparing an explanation on the timing of the transfer of materials on tax violations to the investigation.. Vitaly Zvankov did not disclose the details of the upcoming document, but emphasized, that he is close to the position of "Business Russia". Ekaterina Avdeeva recently proposed to strictly indicate in the law a reasonable and common period for all to pay off debt to the budget, to get away from legal uncertainty: "Important, so that the entrepreneur knows exactly the time, during which he can pay the arrears and take advantage of the guarantee of non-initiation of criminal proceedings”. Already after payment, if the taxpayer does not agree with the additional charges, he can try to recover his funds in the arbitration court. “Legal mechanisms should be based on the norms of the Code of Criminal Procedure and the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation,» – supported by Alexander Khaminsky, Member of the General Council of Business Russia, head of the Law Enforcement Center in. Moscow and Moscow region.

“In the context of sanctions pressure, it is necessary to support domestic entrepreneurs and create a comfortable safe environment for them. They are our potential, they create new technologies, implement the policy of import substitution, provide industrial infrastructure and jobs,» – said Ekaterina Avdeeva. According to her, liberalization of legislation should proceed in a balanced way, since, one side, force pressure on business should be reduced, on the other hand, institutions of society and the state should not be left without criminal legal protection.

Recall, that the meeting of the Expert Center took place 4 August in the mansion on Delegatskaya. The large-scale event brought together more than half of the constituent entities of Russia and became a platform for direct dialogue between the business community, federal law enforcement agencies, business ombudsman, scientists. The main goal of the meeting is to find solutions to eliminate systemic problems in the practice of applying tax compositions.

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