MOSCOW, September 15 (RAPSI) – A Just Russia party lawmakers have submitted a package of bills to the State Duma toughening punishment for cruelty to animals, party leader Sergei Mironov told journalists on Thursday.

Amendments are proposed to the Russian Criminal Code and Administrative Offences Code.

Presently, administrative liability for animal abuse is stipulated in certain territorial entities of the country. Under the bill submitted by A Just Russia party, administrative liability for such crimes if they are not resulted in injuries or death of an animal would be established at the federal level.

As for criminal liability for animal cruelty, current legislation provides punishment only for injuring animals or cause death by acts done “from molester motives, for reasons of greed, with the use of sadist methods or in the presence of minors”. Such offenses are punishable by up to 2 years in prison only if they have been committed by a group of people or an organized gang, either if the crime was collusive, according to Mironov.

The second draft law proposed by the MPs specifies the term “injury” and introduces criminal liability for organizing and carrying out fighting involving animals as well as for setting some animals on others entailed their death or injury.

The bill also stipulates that cruelty resulted in the animals’ injury or death would be punished with prison terms of up to 6 years.