Interview of the Chairman of the Investigative Committee of Russia to Interfax agency

Alexander Bastrykin: the issue of codification of migration legislation in Russia is urgent

The head of the Investigative Committee told about the situation with crime among foreigners and about the possibilities of making migration control more effective

In the interview with Kirill Mazurin, a columnist for Interfax, the Chairman of the Investigative Committee of Russia spoke about the dynamics, causes and measures for prevention of foreign crime in the Russian Federation.

- Alexander Ivanovich, in recent months there have been several serious crimes committed by foreigners in Moscow and other regions, including clashes between groups of migrants using traumatic and stabbing weapons. These criminal events provoked a wide public response and discussion at various media outlets. What are the dynamics of such crime today?

- You are right, currently there is an increase in illegal actions of migrant workers, there are gross violations of public order with their participation, mass fights. This generates social tension and aggravates the criminal situation in Russia.

So, if in the first six months of 2020 law enforcement agencies investigated more than 17 thousand crimes committed by foreigners, in the first half of 2021 - almost 19 thousand.

At the same time in the structure of migrants' crime there are trends of growth of unlawful acts having increased social danger, in particular, extremism - by 33%, terrorism - by 26%, murders - by 8%, rapes - by 5%.

- Which episodes drew special attention of your agency?

- In July of this year, about two hundred migrants from Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan engaged in a mass brawl in Moscow, resulting in stab wounds to several participants and damage to parked cars.

In early September in Odintsovo, near Moscow, there was a conflict involving more than twenty people from neighboring countries armed with knives. Similar street clashes of migrant workers were noted in other cities of the Moscow, Amur, and Sverdlovsk Regions. In Buzhaninovo near Moscow, two migrants from Tajikistan brutally raped and murdered an elderly woman.

- Did your specialized departments analyze the situation, what conclusion did they come to?

- Such work is done all the time. Forensic studies show that the growing aggression of migrant workers is related to the improper organization of their social and living conditions by employers, as well as the lack of proper prevention of crime among those arriving to work in Russia, who need to be informed about responsibility and the consequences of committing certain unlawful deeds.

- And how effective is the current migration legislation, is there, in your opinion, a need to make any amendments to it?

- At present, a total of hundreds of normative acts are already regulating migration issues. And this is a multifaceted and rather confusing regulatory framework. Therefore, the issue of codifying migration legislation is clearly overdue, where it would be possible to clearly prescribe all forms of migration, as well as norms related to the registration of foreigners, with the issuance of quotas for employment, as well as clearly define the procedure for recording migrants, their fingerprinting and other types of control.

Here it is also necessary to establish a procedure for interaction between law enforcement agencies and customs departments of state security agencies, which will make it possible to carry out more effective and efficient migration control.

In addition, it is necessary to subject all migrant workers entering Russia from neighboring countries to mandatory genomic registration.

Such measures will seriously tighten control over migration processes, allow us to put an additional barrier to the penetration of criminal elements in our labor market, and allow law enforcement agencies to more successfully solve the crimes committed by them.