MOSCOW, July 3 (RAPSI) - The State Duma on Tuesday lawmakers have approved a draft bill on economic amnesty in its second reading.

An amendment to the second reading excludes pt. 2 of the article on illegal banking activity. The amnesty will not be applied to those guilty of committing a crime in this field as a member of an organized group, or a crime that has resulted in an especially large amount of profit.

The resolution releases from criminal liability, regardless of the designated prison term, individuals who were convicted or held liable under 27 articles of the Criminal Code related to business activities. For the amnesty to take effect, a suspect or a convict has to return the property or compensate damages to complainants.

The amnesty applies not only to those serving prison terms but also individuals who received non-custodial sentences, under suspended sentences and convicted on parole.
Adoption of the bill is reserved to exclusive jurisdiction of the State Duma and does not require approval from the Federation Council. The document does not have to be signed by the President. The resolution takes effect on the day of its official publication and is to be executed within six months.

Talk of a financial amnesty emerged after business rights ombudsman Boris Titov pleaded with the State Duma to release 111,000 enterpreneurs from prison. He believes many of those were pressured into breaking the law by flawed and overly strict financial regulations.