The magazine "Publichnoe Pravo Segodnya" (Public Law Today) published an article by the Chairman of the Investigative Committee of Russia, dedicated to the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the agency

On January 15, 2021 the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation celebrated its tenth anniversary. An important milestone has been passed, which allows us to look back and take stock of some of our activities in order to move forward even more confidently in carrying out the tasks entrusted to us to combat crime and protect the legitimate interests of citizens.

The Federal Law "On the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation"[1] for the first time in 300 years returned the model of development of investigative bodies to the idea of Peter the Great[2]. The law establishes that the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation is not part of the structure of any of the bodies of state power and reports directly to the President of the Russian Federation.

Thus, the idea, once formulated by our glorious ancestors, was realized again, but under new historical conditions. We have returned to the roots, to what began the investigation in the difficult time of Peter the Great's Russia.

The renewed system of investigative bodies has been working fully and uniformly for 10 years now, providing an uncompromising fight against crime throughout the country within the framework of the legally established investigative jurisdiction.

From the very first days of our founding, our priorities have been the same: combating corruption, solving and investigating serious and especially serious crimes, including crimes of past years, protecting the interests of minors and other vulnerable social groups, combating extremism and terrorism, and protecting the rights and legitimate interests of citizens guaranteed by the Constitution of the Russian Federation.

It should be emphasized that the activities of employees of the Investigative Committee are associated with the presence of risk and threats to life, takes place in a rigid time and procedural framework, with high physical and psychological stress, and frequent stressful situations. It requires not only high professionalism, but also the highest moral and ethical qualities, devotion to work and the requirements of the oath of allegiance to the motherland.

Over the past 10 years, 278 employees of the Investigative Committee have received high state awards for their services in strengthening the rule of law and the protection of the rights of citizens, as well as for courage and bravery. They were awarded the Orders of Alexander Nevsky (1), Courage (20), Honor (30), Friendship (4), “For Military Merit” (3), “For Service to the Fatherland” (5).

Today we remember with deep gratitude those who stood at the origins of our department: Anatoly Pavlovich Korotkov, Mikhail Georgiyevich Yadrov, Yury Ivanovich Lekanov and many other leaders who, with their talent and extensive legal knowledge formed the structure of departments, selected people, developed organizational documents, issued regulations, built a practical, effective and coordinated work of departments.

Time has shown that our employees have great professionalism, a sense of true patriotism, high culture and excellent spiritual and moral qualities. And examples of work of many of our employees show high dedication, desire and ability to give it their all, their willingness to sacrifice in the name of achieving great goals, achieving truth and justice.

Over the years, a lot of consistent work has been done to improve the structure of the Investigative Committee. Currently, the number of investigative and forensic positions is more than 75% of the established staffing level. For example, over the years the number of investigators in the Main Investigative Department has increased fivefold, due to organizational and staffing measures, and currently stands at 358 staff units.

The enormous amount of work done by investigators is clearly demonstrated by the fact that from 2011 (when the Investigative Committee became an independent investigative body) to date (up to 9 months of 2020) almost 1 million criminal cases (971,003) have been sent to court. More than 300 billion rubles have been reimbursed to the government and to the victims of offenses during preliminary investigations and procedural probes.

In the period from 2011 to 2020, more than 10 thousand criminal cases were under investigation by the investigators of the Main Investigative Department of the Investigative Committee, which investigates the most complex crimes. To compare: if in 2011 the Main Investigative Directorate had 138 criminal cases, in 2020 there were 1344. In addition, the Main Major Crimes Investigation Department has completed more than 300 criminal cases since May 2016, of which 219 against 483 persons have been sent to court. At the stage of the preliminary investigation, almost 1 billion rubles (995.8 million rubles) was recovered, and 4.5 billion rubles worth of property was seized.

Over the 10 years of work of the Investigative Committee, more than 90 thousand criminal cases of corruption have already been sent to the courts. We managed to achieve significant compensation for damage in corruption cases - the state and victims of crimes were reimbursed almost 34 billion rubles, the property of the accused was arrested in the amount of 76.8 billion rubles. The Investigative Committee is seeking the inevitability of punishment for any corrupt official, regardless of his official position. The names of high-ranking officials and governors who have been punished over the years are well known to all, since the criminal cases against them were widely covered in the media. The investigation of the other criminal cases, and they are also well known to the public, will be brought to their logical conclusion.

It should be said that openness to the people is the basic principle of the Investigative Committee. We use all modern channels of communication with the population, which give people the opportunity to ask for help without bureaucratic delays, to express an opinion about the work of investigators.

As for countering new challenges and threats, it is necessary to say that our work on the investigation of crimes by international terrorism in Egypt, Turkey, Syria and Iraq, in the combat zone of the Lugansk and Donetsk Republics has significantly increased. Due to the large volume of work to record evidence of crimes committed against civilians in southeastern Ukraine, a specialized department for the investigation of crimes involving the use of prohibited means and methods of warfare was created in the Investigative Committee in 2014. We are currently investigating more than 430 criminal cases, including against representatives of Ukrainian security agencies, as well as the shelling of settlements and civilians. The Investigative Committee of Russia will undoubtedly complete the investigation of the crimes committed against civilians in Southeastern Ukraine. It's just a matter of time.

It should be noted that in order to improve the effectiveness of the investigation, we are constantly working to improve the work of the agency. The most advanced investigative techniques, the latest forensic and special techniques are introduced into investigative practice, and modern digital technologies are used to search for and consolidate evidence in criminal cases.

A lot of work in this area is carried out by the Main Forensics Department, which is constantly and dynamically improving its activities. In 2018, the Forensics Center of the Investigative Committee and the Department of the organization of research activities (Scientific Research Institute of Forensic Science) were created, which took over the functions of organizing and carrying out work on scientific support of forensic activities, the implementation of its results in the practical activities of the Investigative Committee. Over the past 5 years alone, criminalists of the Main Forensic Department (Forensics Center) have carried out more than 4,000 trips and visits to investigative bodies. They participated in 6 thousand investigative and procedural actions, solved 808 grave and especially grave crimes, including those committed in previous years.

Since 2015, with the active participation of territorial forensic units, more than 60,000 crimes have been solved, including more than 20,000 murders, 8,000 causes of grievous harm to health resulting in the death of victims, 9,000 crimes against sexual integrity, and 7,000 crimes of the past.

Last year we opened the Forensic Expert Center of the Investigative Committee. This institution, created on our initiative by Presidential Decree[3], allows us to use the latest achievements of scientific and technological progress in forensic conclusions, to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the preliminary investigation.

Military investigative bodies occupy a special place in the system of the Investigative Committee. Military investigators show courage, show loyalty to service and military duty in hot spots.

Speaking in terms of statistics, over the past 10 years the military investigators have finished more than 10 thousand criminal cases of corruption against 8,000 officials. The proven damage to the state in these criminal cases amounted to more than 23.5 billion rubles.

I would like to emphasize that within the framework of active work to establish new circumstances of monstrous crimes against peaceful population during the Great Patriotic War in order to apply unified approach to qualification of criminal actions, the Main Investigative Department opened a criminal case under Article 357 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation on the fact of genocide of peoples of the Soviet Union by German fascist invaders and their accomplices in 2020.

This criminal case was merged with earlier cases of mass murders of civilians in the Crimea, Volgograd, Novgorod, Orel, Pskov and Rostov Regions, Krasnodar and Stavropol Territories. These crimes have no statute of limitations.

It should be said that we are doing extensive work to train our own staff.

Today, the Investigative Committee of Russia trains future investigators from the school years: there are three cadet corps in the system and 96 of our cadet classes in different Russian cities. Upon graduation from cadet education, graduates continue their specialized education in the Committee institutions of higher education - the Moscow and St. Petersburg academies. And those who graduated from our academies are already serving in investigative bodies in all regions of Russia, using their knowledge and skills. Now there is active work on the creation and development of two more cadet corps: Sevastopol Cadet Corps named after Admiral V.I. Istomin and Girls' Boarding School.

In order to further improve education and training, the Investigative Committee approved the Concept of continuous departmental education, focused on the achievement of high results by students, the necessary scientific and methodological capacity has been created, the faculty has been selected, a program of internships, organized public assistants of investigators, mentoring have been introduced. As part of the Presidential Program "Decade of Childhood"[4] the Concept of patriotic education for educational organizations of the Investigative Committee was approved. Beginning September 1, 2019, we increased the percentage of orphans and children without parental care enrolled in our educational institutions. Every year cadets and students are more actively involved in patriotic actions, volunteer movement, search parties.

In April 2019, based on the results of the All-Russian relay race of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation "Road of Memory", which took place from Vladivostok to the fortress-hero Brest, the Interregional public organization "Young Investigator" was created and registered in the Ministry of Justice of Russia, whose main objectives were defined as patriotic and moral education of youth, popularization of investigative work in the teenagers.

In this regard, a huge word of thanks to the veterans of the investigation. Especially for the fact that even today many veterans, despite their age and health problems, are still in combat formation. Today we remember the founder of the "Union of Veterans of Investigation" Vladimir Ivanovich Kravtsev and his associates. Thanks to their persistence and efforts, good traditions of Russian investigation were brought to the Investigative Committee. Through their efforts, the National Association of Organizations of Veterans of Investigative Bodies "Union of Veterans of Investigation" was established, which today comprises more than 2 thousand people. The Union provides great assistance to investigative agencies in matters of youth development, transfer of experience in investigative work, their patriotic and spiritual and moral upbringing. 

We are proud that in line with our veterans stands All-Russian public organization on perpetuating the memory "Outstanding military commanders and naval commanders of the Fatherland," which is headed by a veteran of the Great Patriotic War, the Prosecutor General of the USSR, a member of the Public Council under the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation Alexander Yakovlevich Sukharev. This year the organization will celebrate its 25th anniversary!

I would like to emphasize that as part of a worthy celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945, the Investigative Committee held a series of meetings in 2019-2020. The Investigative Committee held in 2019-2020 the All-Russian patriotic youth Relay of good deeds, which received the personal support of the President of the Russian Federation and was included in the action plan of the Year of Memory and Glory[5].

The route of the relay went from Kamchatka to Kaliningrad through all the heroic cities and cities of military glory of Russia and historical centers of the country. Children from thematic shifts of the Investigative Committee in the International Children Center "Artek" and the all-Russian children's centers "Ocean", "Orlyonok" and "Smena" took an active part in it. The banner of the Good Deeds Relay was symbolically carried on Red Square, erected on Mount Elbrus, traveled aboard the space station, and passed along the Northern Sea Route on the "Sedov" bark.

The list of good deeds of the youth movement in the system of the Investigative Committee included assistance and support for veterans of the Great Patriotic War, veterans of combat operations, veterans of the investigation and their families. Thousands of graves, obelisks and graves of war heroes were put in order. The Investigative Committee was awarded the first prize among the power structures and agencies of our state by the Russian organizing committee "Victory" for holding the Relay of good deeds.

It is very important to note that by their line of work, investigative agencies are among the first to encounter a child's distress, so we immediately provide help and support to the affected child. In general, the staff of investigative bodies of the Investigative Committee, together with veterans' organizations, now provide active assistance to specialized institutions for children, which are raising more than 20,000 children. There are more than 400 such children's institutions that are under the patronage of our agency.

We stand for our principle attitude towards the protection of children's rights and legal interests. Our motto is "No child is somebody else's!" In that, investigation of all grave and especially grave offenses against children is under my special supervision and is assigned to the most experienced investigators. In 10 years the number of initiated criminal cases in this category increased by 48%, and the number of cases sent to court increased by 34%. This shows that the rights and legitimate interests of children are under our reliable protection.

During the life of the Investigative Committee, investigative traditions have developed in the teams. It's mutual assistance, dedication, and selfless service to the law. And the people of the country know and feel it. People often perceive the Investigative Committee as their last hope for justice. This is evidenced by the 3.6 million appeals from citizens in 10 years. Already more than a million people have been received by the heads of investigative departments at personal receptions.

It is impossible not to mention our support units. Thanks to their work there is an uninterrupted supply of uniforms, premises, transport, and housing. For example, the actual provision of cars, vans, trucks and mobile forensic laboratories is currently at the level of 91.5%. On the eve of the New Year 2021 we have acquired our own Committee sanatorium "Rodina", which is located on the Black Sea coast near Yalta.

As we celebrate the tenth anniversary of the department's founding, we remember our comrades who have fallen in the fight against crime. Thirteen members of the Investigative Committee lost their lives in the line of duty. They stayed loyal to their oath to the very end and did not waver or retreat in the most critical moments. Their names are forever in the Book of Memory of the Investigative Committee. I would like to note that next to the names of the officers of the Investigative Committee are the names of young heroes of the Fatherland who died at the hands of criminals or while saving their comrades.

Such heroic deeds are the result of high patriotic, moral education in the family, school, and social environment.

The memory of our fallen comrades is kept sacred in our hearts, in the names of streets and schools, in the cases that are continued by the current generation of investigators. They will always remain for us an example of dedication to the profession, valor and honor.

Service in the Investigative Committee - it is a choice not easy, but very important and responsible work that requires professionalism, determination, perseverance, and often courage in the fight against crime, maintaining public safety and law and order.

Each of us sees it as our duty to uphold the law and fight for justice so that our homeland remains a strong and great power. Our fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers fought and died for this.

By the experience of older generations we are convinced that only courage and steadfastness, work and responsibility, friendship and cooperation, loyalty to traditions are a reliable guarantee of overcoming all difficulties, the key to success in the fight against crime, security and prosperity of our beloved homeland!

 


[1] Federal law of 28.12.2010 No 403-FZ (ed. from 27.10.2020) "On the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation" // Laws of the Russian Federation. 03.01.2011. No 1. Art. 15.

[2] Serov D.O., Fedorov A.V. Investigators of Peter the Great. Moscow: Molodaya Gvardiya, 2018. 348 с.

[3] Decree of the President of the Russian Federation of 01.07.2020 No 442 "On introducing amendments to the Regulation on the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, approved by Presidential Decree of 14 January 2011 No 38" // Laws of the Russian Federation. 06.07.2020. No 27. Art. 4193.

[4] Decree of the President of the Russian Federation of 29.05.2017 No 240 "On declaring a Decade of Childhood in the Russian Federation" // Rossiyskaya Gazeta. 30.05.2017. No 115.

[5] Presidential Decree No 327 of 08.07.2019 "On the Year of Memory and Glory in the Russian Federation" // Laws of the Russian Federation. 15.07.2019. No 28. Art. 3764.