The article analyses the experiment conducted by He Jiankui, a professor from the Southern University of Science and Technology (Shenzhen, China), and compares major approaches to the first-ever human genetic modifications in terms of criminal law. Criminal-law scientists in China consider He Jiankui’s experiment as illegal and punishable. However, they make different legal evaluation of it: an illegal medical practice, a forgery of documents or a fraud. The author concludes that both the Chinese law and the Russian law are not ready to adequately respond to illegal activities in the field of genetics. The article makes an assessment of public danger caused by different manipulations with the human genome. According to the author, socially dangerous manipulaions include: 1) changing the embryo genome by means of gene-editing techniques with further implantation of the embryo in a situation when parents are not aware of such manipulations and their possible consequences; 2) applying genetic therapy or other transgenesis to a person who is not aware of the character of such manipulations and their possible consequences.