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Decree on Protection of Property
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DECREE OF THE CENTRAL GOVERNMENT OF THE USSR: "ON THE PROTECTION OF THE PROPERTY OF STATE ENTERPRISES, COLLECTIVE FARMS AND COOPERATIVES, AND ON THE CONSOLIDATION OF PUBLIC (SOCIALIST) PROPERTY"

7 August 1932

Recently, we have received an increasing number of complaints from workers and collective farmers about cargo theft from railway and river transport, as well as theft of property belonging to cooperative societies and collective farms, perpetrated by hoodlums and anti-social elements. There has also been an increasing number of complaints about coercion and threats from kulak elements aimed at those collective farmers who refuse to withdraw from collective farms and continue honestly and selflessly developing them.

The Central Executive Committee and the Soviet of People's Commissars of the USSR believe that public property (belonging to the state, collective farms, and cooperative societies) is the foundation of the Soviet state system, that it is sacred and inviolable, and that individuals attempting to incorporate public property into their private possession should be considered enemies of the people. In view of this, an unrelenting struggle against thieves of public property is the foremost duty of Soviet government bodies.

On the basis of these considerations and in order to grant the requests of workers and collective farmers, the Central Executive Committee and the Soviet of People's Commissars of the USSR have resolved the following:

I

1.To consider the importance of railway and river cargo equal to that of state property, and to reinforce cargo protection in every way.

2. To apply the highest measure of social protection-shooting and the confiscation of property-as a measure of judicial repression for the theft of property belonging to collective farms and cooperative societies, and under mitigating circumstances, to replace this measure with at least 10 years of imprisonment and the confiscation of property.

3. To give no amnesty to criminals guilty of cargo theft.

II

1.To consider the importance of property belonging to collective farms and cooperative societies (harvest in the field, public reserves, cattle, cooperative warehouses and stores, etc.) equal to that of state property, and to reinforce theft protection of this property in every way.

2. To apply the highest measure of social protection-shooting and the confiscation of property-as a measure of judicial repression for the theft of property belonging to collective farms and cooperative societies, and under mitigating circumstances,to replace this measure with at least 10 years of imprisonment and the confiscation of property.

3. To give no amnesty to criminals guilty of stealing property belonging to collective farms and cooperative societies.

III

1. To conduct an unrelenting struggle against those anti-social kulak and capitalist elements which are using coercion and threats or advocate the application of coercion and threats to collective farmers, in order to make them withdraw from collective farms, and thus, cause forcible disintegration of collective farms. To consider these crimes equal in gravity to treason.

2.To apply, as measures of judicial repression, 5-10 years of imprisonment in concentration camps in cases concerning the protection of collective farms and collective farm workers from coercion and threats from kulak and other anti-social elements.

3. To give no amnesty to criminals found guilty in these cases.


(Original document in Sobranie zakonov (Collection of Laws) 1932, № 62); reproduced in Tragediia sovetskoi derevni. Vol. 3. (Moscow, 2001) Pp. 453-454.


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