Moscow, January 18, Interfax - A bill on life imprisonment for child sexual abuse passed the State Duma on second and third reading on Tuesday.
The bill extends the application of maximum penalty for pedophiles.
At present, only recidivists with a previous conviction for a sexual offense against an under-14, face life in prison. Under the new law, anyone with such conviction who reoffends against an under-18 could receive a life sentence.
Also, it is proposed to apply the maximum measure for first-time offenders, provided the abuse was carried out with another serious crime such as use of violence or against two or more children.
During second reading, the Duma approved an amendment that crimes against any underage person, not just under-14s, should entail life imprisonment.
The bill was authored by the chairman of the Duma committee for legislation and state-building, Pavel Krasheninnikov, Federation Council member Andrey Turchak (both of the United Russia) and Duma information policy committee chairman Alexander Khinshtein. The bill was introduced in September of last year.