Sergey Andreevich Sinenko is Candidate of Science (Law), Associate Professor, Head of Vladivostok Branch of Far Eastern Law Institute of Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia.
This study investigates the procedure for declaring a person the victim (aggrieved person) in a criminal case, by virtue of which such person is conferred with the status provided under the Code of Criminal Procedure of the Russian Federation in order to protect his or her rights and legitimate interests prejudiced by the relevant offence. It is concluded that the existing procedure is far from being perfect and restricts the victim's access to justice guaranteed under the RF Constitution. Our analysis of the criminal procedure statutes, criminal legislation and other regulatory enactments, as well as of the statuses of other persons involved in a criminal proceeding finds that the person who has suffered a criminal injury, becomes practically at once entitled, as may be provided by law, to protect his or her rights and interests, which entitlement should also be acquired on the legal basis. This study states and establishes our opinion that law construction should only focus on the first sentence in the RF CCR, Chapter 1, Art. 42. Such approach to a fully legitimate intervention of the aggrieved person in the administration of criminal justice would make it possible for the victim to partially equilibrate his or her legal status to the statuses of the proceeding participants referred to by the legislator as the defense team, and therefore the victim would become able to ensure the protection of his or her rights and interests more efficiently and at an earlier stage. It is concluded that the victim must take an active participation in to the criminal justice process prior to the institution of a criminal case as well. There is no information proving the occurrence of any adverse effect due to conferring an adequate criminal procedure status to the victim immediately, for example, after the victim has filed his or her statement with the law enforcement agencies, while a delay in such conferment of the status might affect the victim's prospects for the attempts to protect his or her rights and interests.
Key words: victim, status of the victim, statement of an offence, stage of the institution of a criminal case, protection of rights and interests, adversarial system, time of the perpetration of a wrongful act, order to declare as the victim, parties to a criminal proceeding, private-charge case, access to justice.