Business Criminal Law in Hungary

Regulating business criminal law is one of the most significant matters in Hungarian criminal policy. According to recent statistics, most crimes are commited againts property. Since the Hungarian business enviroment is very complex, it is necesseary to have an established knowledge about the relevant acts and crimes.

1. Main statutes

The Act C of 2012 on the criminal code regulates the substative criminal law. The Act has two parts; the general part contains general provisions and sections such as criminal liability, grounds for exeption from criminal responsibility, obstacles of criminal prosecution, penalties and measures. The special part contains all the crimes sorted on the basis of the protected legal subject.

The Act XIX of 1998 on the Criminal Proceedings regulates the procedural law. The Act has a general part in which the basic procedural rules are fixed. It implies general principles, actors of the procedure, argumentation, and coercive measures. After that, the general part introduces the stages of the criminal procedure; investigation and court procedure, which can have three parts depending on the remedies submitted. The special part contains procedural rules concerning crimes committed by juvenile, members of armed forces and persons who have exemption from criminal liability. The last part consists other procedures, which concentrate on the execution of the legally binding judgement.

 2. Relevant crimes


Theft means that a person intentionally and fraudulently takes personal property of another without permission or consent and with the intent to convert it to the taker’s use. If the value of the property taken is low, the crime is “petty theft,” but it is “greater theft” and “grand theft” for larger amounts, designated misdemeanor or felony, respectively.


Embezzlement shall mean when a person unlawfully appropriates or disposes of as his own a thing with which he has been entrusted. The lenght of the imprisonment as a penality depends on the value involved in the crime and the circumstances of the perpetration.


Fraud shall mean when a person uses deceit, deception, or trickery for unlawful financial gain, and thereby causes damage. In this regard, not paying for services supplied is also cosnidered as damage.

Economic Fraud

Economic fraud means when a person is involved in bogus economic activities for unlawful financial gain.

Missappropriation of funds

Misappropriation of funds shall mean the act of a person in wrongfully taking or using another’s assets that has been entrusted to him for a specific purpose.


Defalcation shall mean the act of a person entrusted on the basis of law with funds for management or safeguarding, causing financial loss by negligence or breach of obligation; defalcation is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment not exceeding two years

Dealing in stolen goods

Any person who – for financial gain or advantage – obtains, conceals or collaborates in the selling of:

  1. a) any non-Community goods obtained through budget fraud and withheld from customs inspection;
  2. b) excise goods under tax evasion; or
  3. c) any property that originates from theft, embezzlement, fraud, misappropriation of funds, robbery, plundering, extortion, unlawful appropriation, or from another receiver of stolen goods;

is guilty of dealing in stolen goods.

Counterferring currency

 Any person who:

  1. a) imitates or counterfeits currency with the purpose of distribution;
  2. b) obtains counterfeit or falsified currency with the purpose of distribution, exports or imports such currency or transports it in transit through the territory of Hungary;
  3. c) distributes counterfeit or falsified currency;

is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment between two to eight years.

If you would like to hire us as defence lawyers, or you have any further question about business criminal law or criminal procedure in Hungary, please contact us.