Bill on prison terms for election fraud passes first reading
MOSCOW, July 7 (RAPSI) – A bill introducing punishment of up to 5 years in prison for election fraud including so-called carousel voting has passed its first reading in the lower house of Russia’s parliament on Friday.
The bill was approved by Russia’s Supreme Court and government on June 5. On June 8, the initiative was submitted to the lower house of parliament.
Carousel voting is illegal issuance and obtaining of ballots instead of other voters or bussing from one polling site to another in order to cast multiple votes.
Members of election and referendum commissions would face fines ranging from 200,000 to 500,000 rubles ($3,500 – 8,500), community service of up to 4 years, or imprisonment of up to 4 years for the issuance of ballots to citizens enabling them to vote repeatedly during the election or for other individuals and for issuance of completed voting papers.
Receipt of ballot papers instead of other voters or for repeated voting would result in fines ranging from 100,000 to 300,000 rubles ($1,700 – 5,000), community service of up to 4 years, or prison sentence of up to 4 years.
These crimes committed by an organized group and in collusion would be punished with 100,000 to 300,000 rubles, community service of up to 5 years, or prison terms of up to 5 years.
Amendments are proposed to the Russian Criminal Code.