CASE OF YERMAKOVA AND OTHERS v. RUSSIA (European Court of Human Rights) 79300/17 and 5 others

The case originated in applications against Russia lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.


THIRD SECTION
CASE OF YERMAKOVA AND OTHERS v. RUSSIA
(Applications nos. 79300/17 and 5 others – see appended list)
JUDGMENT
STRASBOURG
21 July 2022

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

In the case of Yermakova and Others v. Russia,

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

Darian Pavli, President,
Andreas Zünd,
Mikhail Lobov, judges,
and Viktoriya Maradudina, Acting Deputy Section Registrar,

Having deliberated in private on 30 June 2022,

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

PROCEDURE

1. The case originated in applications against Russia lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) on the various dates indicated in the appended table.

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

THE FACTS

3. The list of applicants and the relevant details of the applications are set out in the appended table.

4. The applicants complained of the excessive length of their pre-trial detention. Some applicants also raised other complaints under the provisions of the Convention.

THE LAW

I. JOINDER OF THE APPLICATIONS

5. Having regard to the similar subject matter of the applications, the Court finds it appropriate to examine them jointly in a single judgment.

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

6. The applicants complained principally that their pre-trial detention had been unreasonably long. They 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.”

7. 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).

8. 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.

9. 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 applicants’ pre-trial detention was excessive.

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

III. OTHER ALLEGED VIOLATIONS UNDER WELL-ESTABLISHED CASE-LAW

11. In application no. 79300/17, the applicant submitted another complaint which also raised an issue under the Convention, given the relevant well-established case-law of the Court (see appended table). This complaint is not manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 (a) of the Convention, nor is it inadmissible on any other ground. Accordingly, it must be declared admissible. Having examined all the material before it, the Court concludes that it also discloses a violation of the Convention in the light of its findings in Svinarenko and Slyadnev v. Russia [GC], nos. 32541/08 and 43441/08, ECHR 2014 (extracts).

IV. REMAINING COMPLAINTS

12. In applications nos. 79300/17 and 17352/20 the applicants also raised other complaints under various Articles of the Convention.

13. The Court has examined the applications listed in the appended table and considers that, in the light of all the material in its possession and in so far as the matters complained of are within its competence, these complaints either do not meet the admissibility criteria set out in Articles 34 and 35 of the Convention or do not disclose any appearance of a violation of the rights and freedoms enshrined in the Convention or the Protocols thereto.

14. It follows that this part of the applications must be rejected in accordance with Article 35 § 4 of the Convention.

V. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION

15. 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.”

16. 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 sums indicated in the appended table.

17. 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. Decides to join the applications;

2. Declares the complaints concerning the excessive length of pre-trial detention and the other complaints under well-established case-law of the Court, as set out in the appended table, admissible, and the remainder of applications nos. 79300/17 and 17352/20 inadmissible;

3. Holds that these complaints disclose a breach of Article 5 § 3 of the Convention concerning the excessive length of pre-trial detention;

4. Holds that there has been a violation of the Convention as regards the other complaints raised under well-established case-law of the Court (see appended table);

5. Holds

(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicants, within three months, the amounts 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 amounts 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 21 July 2022, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.

Viktoriya Maradudina                  Darian Pavli
Acting Deputy Registrar                President

_________

APPENDIX
List of applications raising complaints under Article 5 § 3 of the Convention
(excessive length of pre-trial detention)

No. 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 Other complaints under well-established case-law Amount awarded for pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage and costs and expenses per applicant

(in euros)[i]

1. 79300/17

14/11/2017

Oksana Vladimirovna YERMAKOVA

1977

04/04/2016 to

15/08/2019

Leninskiy District Court of Rostov-on-Don; Rostov Regional Court 3 year(s) and 4 month(s) and

12 day(s)

fragility of the reasons employed by the courts; use of assumptions, in the absence of any evidentiary basis, of the risks of absconding or obstructing justice; failure to assess the applicant’s personal situation reducing the risks of re-offending, colluding or absconding Art. 3 – use of metal cages and/or other security arrangements in courtrooms – Placing the applicant into metal cages in the court hearings concerning the extension of detention until his conviction. 9,750
2. 61889/19

14/11/2019

Svetlana Vasilyevna NEKRASOVA

1964

06/06/2018 to

18/03/2021

Moscow City Court 2 year(s) and 9 month(s) and

13 day(s)

collective detention orders; failure to conduct the proceedings with due diligence during the period of detention; “white collar” charges (fraud); use of assumptions, in the absence of any evidentiary basis, of the risks of absconding or obstructing justice; failure to assess the applicant’s personal situation reducing the risks of re-offending, colluding or absconding; failure to examine the possibility of applying other measures of restraint 3,000
3. 6036/20

15/01/2020

Kurban Abdulpattakhovich ZHAKHPAROV

1989

03/04/2019 to

14/02/2020

Ust-Labinskiy District Court of the Krasnodar Region, Krasnodar Regional Court 10 month(s) and 12 day(s) failure to examine the possibility of applying other measures of restraint; fragility of the reasons employed by the courts; failure to assess the applicant’s personal situation reducing the risks of re-offending, colluding or absconding 1,000
4. 17352/20

26/03/2020

Aleksey Nikolayevich SHUMOV

1976

09/11/2014

pending

Lomonosovskiy District Court of Arkhangelsk, Arkhangelsk Regional Court; 2nd Appellate Court of General Jurisdiction More than 7 year(s) and 6 month(s) and 26 day(s) failure to conduct the proceedings with due diligence during the period of detention 5,000
5. 23952/20

08/05/2020

Vadim Sergeyevich VEDENIN

1979

13/11/2018

pending

Moscow City Court, First Appellate Court More than 3 year(s) and 6 month(s) and 22 day(s) fragility of the reasons employed by the courts; use of assumptions, in the absence of any evidentiary basis, of the risks of absconding or obstructing justice; collective detention orders; failure to assess the applicant’s personal situation reducing the risks of re-offending, colluding or absconding; failure to examine the possibility of applying other measures of restraint 3,700
6. 25682/20

26/05/2020

Ramil Radikovich AKHMETSHIN

1986

22/08/2017

pending

Vakhitovskiy District Court of Kazan; the Supreme Court of the Republic of Tatarstan; Fourth Appellate Court More than 4 year(s) and 9 month(s) and 13 day(s) failure to examine the possibility of applying other measures of restraint, as the case progressed; failure to conduct the proceedings with due diligence during the period of detention 5,000

[i] Plus any tax that may be chargeable to the applicants.

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