Foreign-Exchange Offenses

Foreign-Exchange Offenses

 

in Soviet criminal law, crimes involving infringements on the state foreign-exchange monopoly of the USSR. There are two closely related foreign-exchange crimes: violating the rules of currency exchange transactions and speculating with currency and securities. According to existing law, the following are criminally punishable: purchasing and selling foreign-exchange valuables, exchanging them, making and receiving payment on them, transporting them across the border, and, without the knowledge of the Gosbank (State Bank) of the USSR or its authorized institutions, transacting operations in them. The following types of foreign-exchange valuables are involved: foreign cash; payment documents written in foreign currency (checks, promissory notes, and so on); foreign capital valuables (shares of stock, bonds, and so on); and gold, silver, platinum, and metals of the platinum group in coins, ingots, scrap, or crude form (ore, concentrate, slurry). Speculation in foreign-exchange valuables involves buying and reselling, for purposes of profit, the above-enumerated currency valuables, securities, articles made of precious metals and precious stones, and also the precious stones themselves (including pearls).

Responsibility for foreign-exchange crimes is established by the 1958 Law on Criminal Responsibility for State Crimes (art. 25) and by the criminal codes of the Union republics (for example, art. 88 of the RSFSR Criminal Code). For violation of the rules of currency transactions and speculation in currency valuables and in securities, punishment would be loss of freedom for a period of from three to eight years with or without confiscation of property, but with obligatory confiscation of the currency valuables and securities (with exile for from two to five years or without exile). With aggravating circumstances (for example, where the offenses are committed as an occupation, on an especially large scale, or by a person previously convicted of such offenses) a stricter punishment is envisioned: loss of freedom for a period of from five to 15 years with confiscation of property (with exile or without) or capital punishment with confiscation of property.

M. P. KARPUSHIN

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