CASE OF POPOV v. RUSSIA (European Court of Human Rights) 17730/08

The case originated in an application against Russia lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) on 4 April 2008.


THIRD SECTION
CASE OF POPOV v. RUSSIA
(Application no. 17730/08)
JUDGMENT
STRASBOURG
5 May 2022

This judgment is final but it may be subject to editorial revision.

In the case of Popov v. Russia,

The European Court of Human Rights (Third Section), sitting as a Committee composed of:

Darian Pavli, President,
Peeter Roosma,
Frédéric Krenc, judges,
and Viktoriya Maradudina, Acting Deputy Section Registrar,

Having deliberated in private on 7 April 2022,

Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:

PROCEDURE

1. The case originated in an application against Russia lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) on 4 April 2008.

2. The Russian Government (“the Government”) were given notice of the application.

THE FACTS

3. The applicant’s details and information relevant to the application are set out in the appended table.

4. The applicant complained of the excessive length of his pre-trial detention.

THE LAW

I. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 5 § 3 OF THE CONVENTION

5. The applicant complained that his pre-trial detention had been unreasonably long. He relied on Article 5 § 3 of the Convention, which reads as follows:

Article 5 § 3

“3. Everyone arrested or detained in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 1 (c) of this Article shall be … entitled to trial within a reasonable time or to release pending trial. Release may be conditioned by guarantees to appear for trial.”

6. The Court observes that the general principles regarding the right to trial within a reasonable time or to release pending trial, as guaranteed by Article 5 § 3 of the Convention, have been stated in a number of its previous judgments (see, among many other authorities, Kudła v. Poland [GC], no. 30210/96, § 110, ECHR 2000‑XI, and McKay v. the United Kingdom [GC], no. 543/03, §§ 41-44, ECHR 2006‑X, with further references).

7. In the leading case of Dirdizov v. Russia, no. 41461/10, 27 November 2012, the Court already found a violation in respect of issues similar to those in the present case.

8. Having examined all the material submitted to it, the Court has not found any fact or argument capable of persuading it to reach a different conclusion on the admissibility and merits of these complaints. Having regard to its case-law on the subject, the Court considers that in the instant case the length of the applicant’s pre-trial detention was excessive.

9. These complaints are therefore admissible and disclose a breach of Article 5 § 3 of the Convention.

II. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION

10. Article 41 of the Convention provides:

“If the Court finds that there has been a violation of the Convention or the Protocols thereto, and if the internal law of the High Contracting Party concerned allows only partial reparation to be made, the Court shall, if necessary, afford just satisfaction to the injured party.”

11. Regard being had to the documents in its possession and to its case‑law (see, in particular, Pastukhov and Yelagin v. Russia, no. 55299/07, 19 December 2013), the Court considers it reasonable to award the sum indicated in the appended table.

12. The Court further considers it appropriate that the default interest rate should be based on the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank, to which should be added three percentage points.

FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT, UNANIMOUSLY,

1. Declares the application admissible;

2. Holds that this application discloses a breach of Article 5 § 3 of the Convention concerning the excessive length of pre-trial detention;

3. Holds

(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicant, within three months, the amount indicated in the appended table, to be converted into the currency of the respondent State at the rate applicable at the date of settlement;

(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amount at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points.

Done in English, and notified in writing on 5 May 2022, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.

Viktoriya Maradudina                     Darian Pavli
Acting Deputy Registrar                   President

______

APPENDIX

Application raising complaints under Article 5 § 3 of the Convention

(excessive length of pre-trial detention)

Application no.

Date of introduction

Applicant’s name

Year of birth

 

Period of detention Court which issued detention order/examined appeal Length of detention Specific defects Amount awarded for pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage and costs and expenses per applicant

(in euros)[1]

17730/08

04/04/2008

Mikhail Yevgenyevich POPOV

1978

29/08/2007 to

27/12/2007

Supreme Court of the Russian Federation, Preobrazhenskiy District Court of Moscow, Moscow City Court 3 month(s) and 29 day(s)

 

The application is a follow-up to the judgment in Popov v. Russia,

no. 26853/04, 13 July 2006. On 29/08/2007, in view of the Court’s judgment concluding to numerous violations of Article 6, the applicant’s conviction was quashed by the Presidium of the Supreme Court of Russia and the matter was remitted to the trial court for fresh consideration.

The Presidium’s order remanding the applicant in custody remained silent as to the reason justifying a new period of his pre-trial detention. The subsequent court order extending the pre-trial detention for another three months referred to the gravity of the charges (murder) against the applicant.

Regard being had to the fact that the applicant spent about

1.5 years in custody pending the first set of criminal proceedings against him and has been serving a 10 years’ prison sentence since 10/09/2003, by failing to consider alternative “preventive measures”, and relying exclusively on the seriousness of the charges, the authorities extended his detention on grounds which, although “relevant”, cannot be regarded as “sufficient” to justify its duration (compare, Zherebin v. Russia, no. 51445/09, §§ 56-62, 24 March 2016; and Idalov v. Russia [GC], no. 5826/03, §§ 127-36, 22 May 2012).

1,000

[1] Plus any tax that may be chargeable to the applicant.

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