22.10.2019 | For illegal logging in Lori region during the first 9 months, people have been convicted and the number of the convicts is by 41.6% higher than the number for 2018

The prosecutor's office of Lori region has studied the state of environmental offenses for the first 9 months of 2019, including the legality of the preliminary investigation of criminal cases initiated on the occasion of illegal tree cutting, as well as the prevention and detection of such crimes.


In the course of the study, it has been found that during the specified period the number of not only initiated on the occasion of illegal logging criminal cases, but also directed to the court has been increased. The latter is connected with the large-scale and uncompromising work of all law enforcement agencies directed toward the detection of such cases, the consistency of the prosecutor's office of the region in ensuring the completeness and legitimacy of investigations.


From January 1 to October 16, 2019, 70 criminal cases have been initiated, out of which 19 criminal cases have been sent to the court of first instance of general jurisdiction of Lori region under different parts of Art. 296 of the RA Criminal Code. This is in the case when for the whole year of 2018, 61 criminal cases have been initiated in this field, or compared to the previous year, the number has been decreased by 13%. And 8 criminal cases against 8 people have been sent to court.


Moreover, from the cases reviewed in court during the indicated period, 12 criminal cases with indictments have been completed in respect of 12 people. Meanwhile, for the whole year of 2018, 7 criminal cases have been reviewed and completed regarding 7 people.


It should be noted that the increase in the number of criminal cases initiated concerning the cases of illegal logging is conditioned not only by an increase in the number of cases of illegal logging, but by a significant increase of the efficiency of work to identify and register such cases. Changes in the criminal policy in this field also have made a significant contribution to this, which is reflected in the amendments to the Criminal Code of the Republic of Armenia and the circumstance of the application of comprehensive measures, including new principles for calculating the amount of damage in the case of illegal tree cutting.


At the same time, measures are being taken to effectively combat environmental violations, eliminate corruption in this field and restore damage caused to the legitimate interests of the state.


Only within the framework of the criminal cases presented to the court from October 16 to January 01, 2019, from the amount of damage caused to nature in the amount of 39.5 million AMD, already in the process of pre-trial proceedings 4.5 million AMD have been restored.


It should be noted that especially in case of criminal cases sent to court concerning corruption crimes /during the process of illegal tree cutting/, the prosecutor's office of the region conducts a very punitive policy. The latter is manifested in the fact that in court the prosecutors, in parallel with the appointment of the main punishments, present petition to appoint additional punishments in the form of deprivation of the right to occupy certain positions or to be engaged in certain activities.