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Two years on the road
Head of the Urals Transport Investigations Directorate of the Russia’s Investigative Committee Major General of Justice Dmitry Yevgenyevich Putintsev told in his interview about work of the Urals Transport Investigations Directorate of the Russia’s Investigative Committee (SKR), crimes committed at the railway facilities, investigated by the investigators of the directorate on the eve of 2nd anniversary of SKR.
- Mr. Putintsev, what are special features of implementing functions by investigators in the directorate you head?
Mr. Putintsev: Powers of the Urals Transport Investigations Directorate of the Russia’s Investigative Committee in addition to the Urals Federal District (Sverdlovsk, Tyumen, Kurgan and Chelyabinsk Regions, Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area and Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Area) embrace the territory of the Perm Territory in the place where the Sverdlovsk railway is located and in the Orenburg Region with South Urals railway, therefore our investigators have to work mainly in remote, hard-to-reach areas. As all other investigating bodies of SKR we implement the function of criminal prosecution: carry out pre-investigating checks, based on their results investigators of the Urals Transport Investigations Directorate launch criminal proceedings or of there are legal grounds rule to refuse. The special features of investigators’ work of the Urals Transport Investigations Directorate are investigating and solving crimes committed just in transport area…
- Could you name the most typical crimes?
Mr. Putintsev: Each year the Urals Directorate investigates about 1,000 criminal cases: from murders and rapes to official crimes or corruption. There is the following statistics: in 2012 29 criminal cases with indictments over more than 160 crimes were forwarded to court. They are bribes, abuses of office, frauds. Law enforcement and the customs are the most corrupt.
- What responsibility do staff of Russian Railways, for example, bear?
Mr. Putintsev: Concerning abuses by staff of any commercial organizations, including OAO Russian Railways (OJSC), the managers are criminally liable for article 201 of the RF Criminal Code – Abuse of office.
I will name some examples.
In the Perm Territory a top manager of structural unit of the Russian Railways branch was found guilty of giving two diesel locomotives owned by the branch for free to a commercial organization headed by an acquaintance of his. He got 200 thousand rubles for this illegal service. He was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison with a fine of 300 thousand rubles. One more example: one station master during 1.5 years provided a shipper organization with railway cars out of turn and received fee for that. He was held liable for article 204 of the RF Criminal Code (official bribery). The court fined him on 570 thousand rubles.
- What other crimes are committed at the railways?
Mr. Putintsev: Crimes connected with Violation of safety rules for traffic and operation (article 263 of the RF Criminal Code). However, prerequisite of the criminal liability is large damage exceeding 1 million rubles or serious injury to human health through negligence.
This year investigators of the Directorate have investigated several high-profile criminal cases of this category – criminal cases over two facts of derailment of cargo cars in the Sverdlovsk Region. Freight clerk was prosecuted for derailment of 8 cars with stone that happened on 11 June 2012 at Smychka station of the Nizhny Tagil region of servicing of the Sverdlovsk Region. It was ascertained that the cargo was stated in the document as crushed stone. After the consigner had finished shipping the clerk did not check that the cargo matched the one state in the documents and did not reweigh the cargo. As a result, the cargo train with stone, whose weight exceeded the permissible limit derailed at the point. Another example: a criminal case over derailment of 11 cars at the span Verkhnaya-Interval of Sverdlovsk railway, that took place days after the above-mentioned accident, on 14 June2012, has been sent to the court with charges against head of structural unit of Sverdlovsk directorate of infrastructure of Sverdlovsk railways – branch of Russian Railways. It was found out that no necessary measures had been taken to restore track structure. No hydraulic tightening instrument was applied to lay the rails. Moreover, during track alignment a track stabilizer was not used and accordingly the temperature of the operation was not taken into account. it resulted in the surge of the track when a a train with diesel locomotives was travelling on it.
The main cause of such accident is human factor. For example, collision of the passenger train Adler-Nizhny Tagil with the shunting train at Kamensk-Uralsky station that happened on 13 October this year. As a result the car, diesel locomotive and track-measuring car of the shunting train were damaged and passengers in one of the cars were injured. The criminal case was initiated over article 263 as it was over accidents mentioned above, but it is not finished yet.
On the eve of the coming holiday I would like to congratulate all the colleagues on the anniversary of the Investigative Committee and I wish the magazine readers so that accidents and crimes at the railways become fewer each year.