27.02.2020 | Recovery indicator of the damage caused to the State increased 3,8 times in regard with the number of illegal logging and official crimes linked with them

The Prosecutor's Office of Tavush Region examined the legality of the preliminary investigation of criminal cases initiated in connection with environmental offenses, including illegal logging in 2019, as well as the state of prevention, prohibition and detection of crimes of this nature.

 

The study states that during the reporting period the number of criminal cases not only initiated for logging, but also sent to the court increased first of all due to the large volume of effective work of the law enforcement bodies, consistent and full investigation and legality of the Prosecutor's Office of the Region.

 

In particular, in 2019 127 criminal cases were investigated regarding illegal logging which is higher with 18 cases or 16.5% compared with the year 2018. 26 criminal cases have been sent to the court on 28 persons under Article 269 of the RA Criminal Code with 53% more criminal cases against 27.3% more persons compared with 2018. Moreover, in 2019 decisions on rejecting 6 criminal cases by the prosecutors of the Prosecutor's Office of Tavush Region, materials prepared by the investigative body the aforementioned article and criminal cases have been initiated on different parts of the same article.

 

Moreover, during the mentioned period 22 criminal cases against 23 persons have been completed with indictments, since in 2018 only 17 criminal cases against 22 people have been completed in court.

 

 During 2019 21 criminal cases linked with official crimes related to illegal logging were investigated and prosecuted under the supervision of the prosecutors of the Prosecutor's Office of Tavush Region out of which 17 criminal cases as a result of illegal negligence, 3 cases as a result of abuse of official authority and 1 case is connected with taking bribes in a particularly large amount. 9 officials from “Hayantar» SNCO and «Dilijan National Park» SNCO were charged under the aforementioned criminal cases for official negligence as well as 4 criminal cases against 4 persons were sent to court.

 

At the moment 5 persons are charged with fact of negligence and involvement in corruption allegations in a criminal case initiated in 2019 on Ijevan branch of “Hayantar” SNCO for negligence in June-October 2018; 3 of them are employees of the mentioned branch. The aforementioned criminal case is under investigation.

 

The improvement of the efficiency of the fight against illegal logging and the related official crimes is favored by the change of the criminal policy in this area, and in the frame of it amendments and changes were made to the RA Criminal Code. Besides, the Prosecutor’s Office of the Region is currently undergoing a highly punitive policy, and parallel to the main punishments imposes additional punishments in the form of depriving them to hold certain positions or carry out certain activities.

 

In 2019 in the result of the criminal cases pending in the Prosecutors Office of Tavush Region damage of approximately 623 million AMD was caused to nature and the State and the indicator exceeds 2.3 times (269 million AMD). About 30 million AMD was recovered, which is 3.8 times more than in 2018 (7.8 million AMD). In regard with not recovered means the movable and immovable property of the accused persons are confiscated, regarding the other part investigation still ongoing.

 

In addition, during 2019 237 persons were subjected to administrative penalties for illegal logging according to the materials prepared by the investigative authorities though the grounds for initiating a criminal case were insufficient. The total amount of the damages is 26 million AMD, of which 10.5 million AMD was recovered, and in regard of the rest the sums it was reported to Compulsory Enforcement of Judicial Acts of the Ministry of Justice of the RA.