The Investigative Committee of Russia has opened 273 criminal cases in almost two years on the article about fakes about the army, the head of the department, Alexander Bastrykin, said in an interview with the state agency RIA Novosti.
During this period, 134 cases against 136 persons were referred to the court. Last year, 90 criminal cases were initiated under the article on fakes, Bastrykin reported.
The punishment for spreading false messages about the Russian army and discrediting it was added by State Duma deputies to the Criminal and Administrative Codes immediately after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
Courts recognize any unofficial information about the war as fakes and discredit. The laws are used by the authorities for military censorship and persecution of anti-war activists.
According to him, 81 criminal cases were initiated under the article on discrediting the Russian army, 44 cases against 45 persons were sent to court.
On January 8, the Prosecutor General’s Office of Russia reported that from January to November 2023, 135 criminals were registered under the article on fakes, and 79 criminal cases against 70 persons were sent to court.
The agency also reported on the blocking of almost 70,000 Internet resources over the past hour for spreading so-called fakes and discrediting the army. In 2022, according to the General Prosecutor’s Office, 128,000 Internet resources were blocked. Thus, the number of blockades under these articles since the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine has approached 200 thousand.
Blocked messages primarily concern the war in Ukraine, as well as the economic situation in Russia, accused by the Russian leadership of wanting to use nuclear weapons and violated during the elections in the fall of 2023.
The department notes that the decrease in indicators is partly due to the blocking of social networks Facebook and Instagram in 2022 – the Meta corporation, which owns these resources, was recognized as extremist in Russia.