By Duncan Mackay

Vladimir Putin in front of Olympic ringsJanuary 2 - Russian President Vladimir Putin has officially signed a decree establishing fines of up to one million rubles (£19,000/$30,000/€24,000) for those attempting to sell tickets illegally to the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics and Paralympics.

Any individual found guilty of the offence will face fines totaling up to 10 times the price of the tickets they attempt to sell.

The decree imposes further fines on officials linked to the Olympics, who will pay up to 20 times the ticket price for the same violation.

Organisations will be fined up to one million rubles for breaking the Sochi 2014 ticket sale regulations.

Administrative violations related to the sale of Olympics and Paralympics tickets will be handled by Russian courts in accelerated 10-day cases.

For years, Russia has been plagued by illegal ticket sales at most major sporting and entertainment events.

The new law also regulates hotel prices in the region during the 2014 Games, prohibiting owners charging more than the state-imposed fee for each category.

The decree will come into effect on January 15.