a type of legal liability for violations of the law. Under Soviet law the basis of criminal liability is the commission, either intentionally or through negligence, of a dangerous act provided for by criminal law. Criminal liability ensues primarily from the commission of crimes, but it may also ensue from the preparation of a crime, an attempted crime, or complicity. Criminal proceedings may be instituted only if the elements of a crime, as established by law, are present.
Instituting criminal proceedings means initiating a criminal case, investigating it, and then considering it in court. The procedure for the investigation and court hearing of a criminal case is regulated by the norms of criminal procedural law. The execution of a court’s guilty verdict—the actual realization of criminal liability—is governed by the norms of corrective labor law.
Criminal liability ceases when the convicted person has served his punishment. All criminal legal consequences of criminal liability are removed after the criminal record is canceled or cleared.