Criminal liability for smuggling in Ukraine will be returned as of January 1

MPs adopted the law on harsher penalties for smuggling goods and goods subject to excise duty, as well as for false declarations.

On December 9, 2023, the Verkhovna Rada decided to support the introduction of criminal liability against trafficking. Amendments have been made to the Draft Law No. 5420, which regulates the relevant regulations.


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If smuggling of excisable goods is detected, criminal liability will begin to apply as of January 1, 2024. Regarding the smuggling of all other goods – from 1 July 2024.

The norms provide for thresholds at which criminal liability arises:

  • In accordance with Article 2013 (“Smuggling of Goods”) – if the total value of the smuggled goods – processed in significant quantity – exceeds 6,710,000 UAH or more, in large quantity – 26,840,000 UAH or more;
  • In accordance with Article 2014 (“Smuggling of bulk goods”) – processed on a significant scale – if the total value of the smuggled goods (excluding electrical energy) exceeds 1,006,500 UAH or more, in large quantity – 2,013,000 UAH or more.

Criminal liability is provided as of July 1, 2024. We are also talking about violations of certain quantities, in particular:

  • Liability over UAH 15.14 million – ranging from a fine of UAH 850,000 to 11 years of imprisonment with confiscation of property;
  • From 7.57 to 15.14 million UAH in the form of fines from 170 to 425,000 UAH.

For violations involving consumable goods with a value ranging from 1,136 to 2,271 million UAH, a fine of 340 thousand hryvnia and imprisonment of up to 6 years will apply. For goods whose value exceeds UAH 2,271 million – from a fine of UAH 1,275 million to a prison sentence of 12 years with confiscation of property.

The resolution of the bill is a requirement for providing macro-financial assistance from the European Union. We are talking about a figure of 1.5 billion euros this year.

Smuggling and liability in Ukraine

Criminal liability for smuggling in Ukraine was previously envisaged. It concerned the illegal transportation of weapons or ammunition, explosives, cultural property, powerful, poisonous, radioactive materials, as well as special technical means of secretly obtaining information. In 2011, Ukraine refused to punish commodity smuggling with imprisonment. Viktor Yanukovych signed the relevant law. They then decided to return to the idea of ​​criminalizing these crimes. In 2021, the bill on the return of criminal liability was taken as a basis.

Let us remind you that in October 2022, a plan to hide goods from customs was revealed in Odessa. Elite cars, equipment, alcohol and food were found in the containers.

Source: Focus


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