Crimes Against the Administration of Justice

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Crimes Against the Administration of Justice


in Soviet criminal law, willful criminal acts that infringe on the normal functioning, based on socialist legality, of agencies charged with administering justice. A distinction is made between crimes against the administration of justice committed by officials in agencies of justice or other state agencies responsible for justice and such crimes committed by other persons.

The first group of crimes against the administration of justice, essentially official crimes, includes instituting criminal proceeding against a person known to be innocent; knowingly rendering an unjust judgment, decision, ruling, or decree; arrest or detention known to be illegal; and forcing a person to give evidence.

The second group may be broken down into three subgroups. The first subgroup includes crimes that obstruct the investigation of crimes and the hearing of civil and criminal cases, such as giving information or testimony known to be false, the refusal of a witness or victim to give testimony or of an expert to give his findings, compelling a witness or victim to give false testimony or an expert to give false findings (or bribing these persons), divulging information from the preliminary investigation or inquiry, and embezzling, transferring, or concealing property subject to attachment. The second subgroup includes acts that prevent the carrying out of a judgment, such as escape or the unauthorized return of a deportee to places where he is forbidden to live. The third subgroup consists of such crimes as being an accessory after the fact or failing to report a crime.

The criminal codes of some Union republics also include as crimes against the administration of justice the refusal of officials to carry out a judicial decision, judgment, or decree (Azerbaijan, Kazakh, and Lithuanian SSR’s); a lawyer’s abuse of his duties or a surety’s failure to fulfill his obligations (Armenian SSR); and the illegal release of an arrested person from custody or from his place of confinement or assisting an escape (Turkmen SSR). There are also differences in the punishment for the various crimes.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.