#34 - JRL 2009-177 - JRL Home

Average bribe in Russia amounts to R1m - Interior Ministry
September 23, 2009

As Russian officials tend to prefer large bribes instead of risking while taking small ones, an average bribe in Russia amounts to R930,000 (about 30,000 dollars at the current exchange rate), Aleksandr Nazarov, the head of the search and investigation division of the Russian Interior Ministry's Economic Security Department has said. He was speaking at a meeting with chiefs of public organizations engaged in anti-corruption activity, Russian news agency Interfax reported on 23 September.

"According to the documents collected by the search and investigation division, an average bribe this year amounted to R927,000," Nazarov was quoted as saying.

"The information we possess also confirms that officials are becoming more cautious and are afraid of risking for the sake of minor things," Nazarov said.

Speaking about the detection rate of corruption related crimes, he said: "A positive trend has appeared in detecting and blocking organized groups of corrupted officials acting within government authorities."

The number of finished criminal cases under Article 290 of the Russian Criminal Code (bribe-taking) increased by 17 per cent in the first half of 2009, he added.

"Senior officials from the federal and regional authorities are brought to justice more and more often," Nazarov said, as reported by Interfax.

Speaking about measures to protect the rights of small and medium business, he said that "medium-size enterprises most of all suffer from the abuse of controlling bodies' representatives when they perform different probes and inspections".

In order for a criminal case to be initiated, a person's appeal on the violation of their rights is required, "but most citizens refuse to appeal to the law-enforcement agencies as they are afraid of officials' revenge", Nazarov said. He went on to add that the function of representing citizens' interests and appealing to the law-enforcement bodies could be performed by public organizations.

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