Meaning and difference between concepts of amnesty and parole

Extracts for legal literacy News

When contacting the Ombudsman, citizens often confuse the concepts of Amnesty and Parole. It should be noted that these two processes are not identical and have significant differences in the order of application.

Parole is the termination of the execution of a criminal punishment related to the achievement of its goals, before the serving of the sentence assigned to the convicted person, with the establishment of a probationary period for the released person, during which he must prove his correction.

In accordance with Part 1 of Article 79 of the DPR Criminal Code, a person serving a sentence in a disciplinary military unit, forced labor or imprisonment is subject to parole if the court recognizes that for his correction he does not need to fully serve the sentence imposed by the court, and also compensated for the damage (in whole or in part) caused by the crime, in the amount determined by the court decision. In this case, a person may be fully or partially released from serving an additional type of punishment. That is, parole is a judicial release of a specific convicted person from punishment before the due date.

In turn, amnesty is a measure applied by decision of a public authority to persons who have committed crimes, the essence of which is full or partial release from punishment, replacing punishment with a milder one, or terminating criminal prosecution.

Based on Art. 85 of the DPR Criminal Code amnesty is announced by the People’s Council of the Donetsk People’s Republic in relation to an individually undefined circle of persons. Persons who have committed crimes may be exempted from criminal responsibility by an act of amnesty. Persons convicted of committing crimes may be released from punishment, or the punishment imposed on them may be reduced or replaced with a milder type of punishment, or such persons may be exempted from an additional type of punishment. A conviction may be removed from persons who have served their sentences by an act of amnesty.

Thus, parole is applied to a specific convict who has made an appropriate petition and it is being resolved in court. The amnesty applies exclusively to those categories of crimes that are established by the normative legal act of the DPR People’s Council and refers to an unspecified number of persons.