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Law on enhanced accountability for illegal logging, timber export comes into force in Ukraine

The responsibility for the officials will be more severe than for other citizens
22:00, 1 January 2019

Open source

The law #2531-VIII, which provides the enhancing of the accountability up to the prison sentences for the smuggling of timber, has come into force in Ukraine.

The law has increased the volume of the annual logging of the forest product from 20 million cubic meter up to 25 million.

Related: Desiccation area of woods in Ukraine increases by 400 thousand hectares

The illegal export of the forest products (particularly, raw), sawnwood of valuable and rare trees will be prosecuted in the form of arrest from 3 to 5 years. If a person commits such a crime not for the first time or in the large scale, the arrest will be from 5 to 10 years with the deprivation of the right to occupy particular posts up to 3 years with the confiscation of the property.

If the crime is committed by the organized group or the issue is about the crime in the especially large scale, then the arrest will be from 10 to 12 years with the deprivation of the right to hold particular activity up to 3 years with the confiscation of the property.

Related: Top 20 Ukrainian exporting companies - who are they?

Earlier the illegal logging provided the fine in the sum of $30-61 or arrest for 6 months or restriction of the freedom/arrest up to 3 years.

More severe punishment is implemented not only for the logging but also for the illegal transporting, storage and sale of wood.

Related: Poroshenko signs law criminalizing wood export from Ukraine

Illegal logging in the forests or other stands; transporting, storage, sale of the illegally logged trees or shrubs, which caused the significant damage will be fined in the sum starting from $613 up to $920 or arrest for 6 months or restriction of the freedom/arrest up to 3 years. The repeat crime or the crime committed in collusion of persons will provide the punishment in the form of restriction of the freedom/arrest up to 3 years.

If the trees were logged in the reserves or within the territory of the natural reserve fund, the issue is about the fine from $912 up to $1.226 or restriction of the freedom/arrest up from 3 up to 5 years. If the offense led to the serious consequences (the losses in the sum starting from $3,000, then the arrest for 5-7 years is provided.

Related: Ukrainian export increased by 12,7% in 2018

Moreover, the fines for the damaging of the forests are increased.

The illegal logging, damaging or destruction of forests or saplings can become the reason for the fine in the sum of $9-18 (earlier $3-6) and $46-92 for the officials (earlier $4-7. besides, the fines for the illegal transporting or storage of the logged trees and shrubs are provided.

Related: International scandal, or How to steal Ukrainian forest

The fine in the sum $18-37 for the citizens and $184-368 for officials are provided for the repeat crime during a year.

The damaging of the forest by wastewater, chemical substances, petroleum products and emissions can be fined in the sum of $18-55 for the citizens and $92-153 for officials.

Related: How to combat smuggling at the Ukrainian border

As it was reported earlier, Ukrainian Parliament adopted a bill, which includes greater responsibility for illegal export logs and timber products.  234 MPs voted positively for the bill.

President Petro Poroshenko vetoed the bill adopted by the Ukrainian Parliament, which provides increased liability for illegal timber export. Later he signed this law.

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