MOSCOW, February 19 - RAPSI. The number of people convicted for corruption is declining steadily, Chairman of Russia's Supreme Court Vyacheslav Lebedev said at a conference of judges in Moscow on Tuesday.

Whereas 10,000 people were convicted for corruption in 2010, the figure dropped to 7,500 in 2011 and to 5,500 in 2012, he said. Recent amendments have changed the punishment for bribery to include a fine calculated as a multiple of the bribe amount.

The number of fines in such cases grew from 12% to 70%, while 60% of convicts received suspended sentences, he said.

He added that healthcare, education and the penitentiary system are as prone to corruption today as they were before.

He denied that 300,000 Russians have been convicted for business crimes, explaining that "this statistic" refers to crimes against property.
Only 2,000 business leaders have been convicted, Lebedev said.

He said general jurisdiction courts have been lenient in their verdicts in corruption cases because as many as 42% of the defendants received suspended sentences.