Monday December 15,2014 : RUSSIAN PARLIAMENT TIGHTENS THE SCREWS ON GAMBLING
New law targets gambling organisers.
Since 2009 gambling has been a risky business in most of Russia – banned in all regions of the country other than Kaliningrad, Krasnodar, Altay, Primorskiy Krai, and more recently two new areas in Sochi and the recently annexed Crimea.
Serious punitive measures taken against those who organise gambling have to date been confined to convictions where the revenues involved exceed 1.5 million roubles ($25,967), but that is about to change, as the authorities claim that enforcement raids usually are followed by illegal gambling outfits starting up again elsewhere.
Last week the State Duma (parliament) passed a bill specifically criminalising the activity of organising gambling outside of the regions set aside for the activity – including online and mobile action – and carrying heavy penalties; up to half a million roubles in fines and up to two years imprisonment or four years of home confinement
Where the offender is a legal entity the fines soar to a million roubles and there is provision for the seizure and confiscation of any illegal gambling equipment.