Russia and President Vladimir Putin are being sued by the families of those who died when Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was brought down over eastern Ukraine in July 2014 killing 298 on board.
The action is being brought before the European Court of Rights and is based on the violation of a passenger’s right to life.
In all 33 next-of-kin have been named in the application, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
It is the latest in a series of legal claims following the disaster. In July last year the Telegraph disclosed that Igor Girkin, the leader of Russian separatist forces in eastern Ukraine was, in an action launched in Chicago, formally accused on orchestrating the downing of the Boeing 777.
That claim also alleged that the action was taken with the blessing of the Kremlin.
The Australian claim, which is seeking £4.9 million for each victim names both President Putin and the Russian state as respondents.
Jerry Skinner, the US-based aviation lawyer who is , leading the case, told News.com.au it was difficult for the families to live with, knowing it was “a crime”.
“The Russians don’t have any facts for blaming Ukraine, We have facts, photographs, memorandums, tonnes of stuff.”
Russia has always denied involvement in the downing of the aircraft.
Last year a Dutch report said the plane was brought down by a Russian-made Buk missile, but it did not attribute blame for the atrocity.
The Dutch authorities are still carrying out an investigation into the disaster.
At the same time Dutch and Malaysian diplomats have drafted a UN resolution which would bring those responsible for bringing down the plane to justice.
However the Russians, who have described the resolution as “premature”, hinted they could veto the move.