Specialized Law Office. Protection in cases of economic crimes

Professional criminal defense in the economic sphere and corruption in Russia (Moscow)

How to file a criminal case. Criminal Lawyer Advises...

One of the purposes of criminal justice process is to protect the rights and lawful interests of persons and companies that suffered from crimes.

If the offense has been committed against you, we will protect your rights professionally and efficiently and represent you at all stages of criminal justice process from the moment of writing and submitting a criminal complaint to the moment of imposition of a lawful sentence in respect of the offender and sustaining the civil action within the criminal process.


If you believe that a crime has been committed against you, then you need to write an application to file a criminal case against the person(s), who you think has (have) committed a crime, or to write a complaint with regard to unidentified persons (in case if people who committed an embezzlement are not known to you) and go to the police, the Investigative Committee or the Prosecutor’s Office.

Reasons for filing a criminal case are listed in the Criminal Procedural Law in Article 140, namely:

1) Statement of the crime;
2) Voluntary surrender;
3) Report on the committed or planned crime received from other sources.

The basis for initiating a criminal case is the presence of substantial evidence indicating the elements of the crime.


The statement about the committed crime may be submitted both by the victim or his representative, and by any other person who has knowledge of the crime.


When submitting the complaint, the most important question is where to apply to institute a criminal case, which exactly the law enforcement body, and in what district and city?

It is at this stage that a criminal lawyer will help correctly choose the law enforcement agency that has to process your application, and its location.

As a general rule, the application is submitted at the office nearest to the crime scene. If the application is filed in violation of the investigative jurisdiction, it is transferred to the proper one, and this leads to a large time delay and can lead to the loss of the most important evidence or other consequences negative for you.

If the crime started in one place and ended in another place, the criminal case is to be investigated at the place of the crime was completed.

If the offenses are committed in different locations, the superior chief of the investigation body issues a decision for the criminal case to be investigated at the place of commission of the major crime or most of the series of crimes.

The complaint about commission of the majority of crimes including those against life and health should be submitted to the Police dispatch center of the District Department of Internal Affairs nearest to the crime scene. In this case your complaint about the crime should be registered in the Book of reports of crimes committed and be assigned the KUSP (Book’s) number; with the use of this number, you can monitor the further progress of your complaint.

The complaint about economic crimes should be submitted to the Police dispatch center of the Directorate of Internal Affairs in the corresponding administrative district of Moscow or the Moscow region nearest the crime scene at the name of the Head of Economic Safety Directorate. If the Economic Safety Directorate has its own unit on duty, you should apply there.

The complaint about the crime may also be submitted to the territorial Prosecutor’s Office or to the investigator during the questioning session, but in this case, the Prosecutor is obliged to refer the case for the pre-investigation probe to the relevant police unit, and the investigator can do the probe on his own or transfer the material for the probe to the corresponding division of the Police.

As can be understood from the above, the correct choice of the recipient of your complaint requires a criminal lawyer’s assistance.

The complaint may be written or oral, however, for the second option, a protocol is to be made that should contain data on the applicant and his/her signature just like an ordinary complaint.

Taking into account the above, it should be said that the establishment of sufficient evidence for starting a criminal case is an evaluative concept, and determination of their adequacy depends on the person who considers the crime report.

At this stage, you really need a criminal lawyer, as he will help you formulate your complaint about the crime, refer to the law when setting forth the unlawfulness of actions of persons in respect of whom you are writing the complaint, develop testimony and try to preserve the data that may later occur to be evidence in the case.

At this stage, there may appear problems with filing the criminal case, since it is very often that the agencies carrying out a probe into the crime report try to illegally refuse to initiate a criminal case for absence of event of a criminal act or its elements.

Very often such refusals occur in cases related to economic crimes (illegal receipt of credits, swindling, evasion of taxes, etc.). However, the refusal may also be due to the so-called gray agreements between functionaries and suspected persons.

The reasons that push functionaries to take the unlawful decision on refusal to initiate criminal proceedings may be very different, and there is no need to dwell on them as part of this format.

It is for the above reasons that your position, set out in the notice of the crime should be as legally competent and justified so as to put functionaries in such a procedural status so as to prevent them from making an illegal decision to dismiss the criminal case.

The term of viewing your application is 3 days, however, this term may be extended to 10 days, and in case of need for documentary checks or audits up to 30 days. In this case, a criminal lawyer may be engaged by the victim to participate in the probe from the very beginning.

When the criminal complaint is being verified, you have the right to give explanations about the circumstances that you have mentioned in it, but this time in more detail, with reference not only to the facts, but also to persons who can attest to your explanations. You also have the right to attach to the verification material the copies of documents that will help establish the circumstances of the crime committed against you and confirm the involvement of the alleged perpetrators. In addition, it is recommended to refer to the documents that you are not able to obtain (for example, from the Tax Inspectorate or documents in the possession of suspected persons, etc.). The authorities and functionaries involved in the verification can demand documents on their own in order to verify the circumstances set out in your explanation and explanations of suspected persons (if any have been established).

Upon review of your application one of the following decisions may be made:

  • Filing a criminal case;
  • Refusal to institute a criminal case;
  • Transferring the report in accordance with the investigative jurisdiction or to the magistrate court.

All the above decisions are made in a form of Resolution of the official concerned (the resolution to file a criminal case, the resolution on refusal to open a criminal case and the resolution to transfer the notice of crime in accordance with the investigative jurisdiction).

You have the right to appeal any of the above decisions in case of disagreement. The appeal procedure is available in two instances:

  • Prosecutor’s Office;
  • Court.

The most efficient is the appeal against the resolution to dismiss the criminal case to the court, which conducts a more thorough check of the legitimacy of actions of a person who refused to start a criminal case.

To sum up the above, it should be noted that if a crime has been committed against you, be sure to contact a lawyer to get professional legal assistance.

The criminal attorney will help you determine the correct position on the case, assist in compiling the criminal complaint, take measures for the preservation and gathering of factual data, which later can be admitted as evidence in the case, and also will help appeal the decision of interior agencies, if you disagree with the latter.

As we can see, when submitting a notice of the crime, a good criminal attorney is a must. When choosing the person who will provide legal assistance to you, you need to choose a lawyer who specializes in this category of cases.