CASE OF SAYFUTDINOV AND OTHERS v. RUSSIA (European Court of Human Rights) 22000/18 and 20 others

The applicants complained of the permanent video surveillance of detainees in post-conviction detention facilities. Some applicants also raised other complaints under the provisions of the Convention.


THIRD SECTION
CASE OF SAYFUTDINOV AND OTHERS v. RUSSIA
(Applications nos. 22000/18 and 20 others – see appended list)
JUDGMENT
STRASBOURG
15 September 2022

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

In the case of Sayfutdinov 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 25 August 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 permanent video surveillance of detainees in post-conviction detention facilities. 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 8 of the Convention

6. The applicants complained principally of the permanent video surveillance of detainees in post-conviction detention facilities. They relied, expressly or in substance, on Article 8 of the Convention, which reads as follows:

“1. Everyone has the right to respect for his private … life …

2. There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.”

7. The Court has already established, in an earlier case against Russia, that the national legal framework governing the placement of detainees under permanent video surveillance in penal institutions falls short of the standards set out in Article 8 of the Convention (see Gorlov and Others v. Russia (nos. 27057/06 and 2 others, 2 July 2019). In Gorlov and Others, the Court summed up the general principles concerning the detainees’ right to respect for private life reiterating that placing a person under permanent video surveillance whilst in detention was to be regarded as a serious interference with the individual’s right to respect for his or her privacy (ibid., §§ 81-82). It has further concluded that the national law (1) cannot be regarded as being sufficiently clear, precise or detailed to have afforded appropriate protection against arbitrary interference by the authorities with the detainees’ right to respect of their private life (ibid., §§ 97-98) and (2) does not presuppose any balancing exercise or enable an individual to obtain a judicial review of the proportionality of his or her placement under permanent video surveillance to the vested interests in securing his or her privacy (ibid., § 108).

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. It considers, regard being had to the case-law cited above, that in the instant case the placement of the applicants under permanent video surveillance in post-conviction detention facilities was not “in accordance with law”.

9. These complaints are therefore admissible and disclose a breach of Articles 8 of the Convention.

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

10. Some applicants submitted complaints under Article 13 of the Convention about the absence of an effective domestic remedy to complain about permanent video surveillance in detention facilities (see the appended table). These complaints are not manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 (a) of the Convention, nor are they inadmissible on any other ground. Accordingly, they must be declared admissible. Having examined all the material before it, the Court concludes that they also disclose a violation of Article 13 of the Convention in the light of its well-established case-law (see Gorlov and Others, cited above, §§ 106-10).

IV. REMAINING COMPLAINTS

11. In applications nos. 22000/18, 37673/19, 9521/21, 11469/21 and 21109/21, the applicants also raised other complaints under various Articles of the Convention.

12. The Court has examined the applications 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.

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

13. 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.”

14. Regard being had to the documents in its possession and to its case‑law (see, in particular, Gorlov and Others, cited above, with further references, § 120, which imposed on the respondent State a legal obligation, under Article 46 of the Convention, to implement, under the supervision of the Committee of Ministers, such measures as they consider appropriate to secure the right of the applicants and other persons in their position to respect of their private life), the Court considers that the finding of a violation constitutes a sufficient just satisfaction in the present case.

FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT, UNANIMOUSLY,

1. Decides to join the applications;

2. Declares the complaints concerning the permanent video surveillance of detainees in post-conviction detention facilities 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. 22000/18, 37673/19, 9521/21, 11469/21 and 21109/21 inadmissible;

3. Holds that these complaints disclose a breach of Article 8 of the Convention concerning the permanent video surveillance of detainees in post-conviction detention facilities;

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 the appended table);

5. Holds that the finding of a violation constitutes in itself sufficient just satisfaction.

Done in English, and notified in writing on 15 September 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 8 § 1 of the Convention
(permanent video surveillance of detainees in pre-trial or post-conviction detention facilities)

No. Application no.
Date of introduction
Applicant’s name
Year of birth
 
Detention facility Period of detention Specific circumstances Other complaints under well-established
 case-law
1. 22000/18
09/04/2018
Arslan Faritovich SAYFUTDINOV
1986
IK-56 Sverdlovsk Region since 2017 detention in different cells with video surveillance Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
2. 29606/18
07/06/2018
Denis Valeryevich CHERPAKOV
1982
IK-17 Krasnoyarsk Region 05/04/2013 – 11/01/2018 detention in different cells with video surveillance Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
3. 37673/19
27/06/2019
Vitaliy Vladimirovich SHASTUN
1979
IK-6 Khabarovsk Region since 2018 detention in different cells with video surveillance
4. 46228/20
12/02/2021
Magsud Takhir ogly GUSEYNOV
1983
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 02/03/2018 – pending opposite-sex operators, detention in different cells with video surveillance, video surveillance in a lavatory and/or shower room Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
5. 649/21
25/03/2021
Sergey Petrovich SOSNIN
1985
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region May 2019 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance, opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
6. 2591/21
10/12/2020
Artur Khavazhiyevich SAKKAYEV
1982
IK-49 Komi Republic, IK-31 Komi Republic April 2019 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance, opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
7. 4498/21
20/12/2020
Maksim Viktorovich GRIGORYEV
1978
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 25/04/2019 – 03/05/2020 opposite-sex operators, video surveillance in a lavatory and/or shower room
8. 9521/21
14/01/2021
Parviz Nuraliyevich GULOMALIYEV
1987
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 26/02/2015 – pending opposite-sex operators, video surveillance in a lavatory and/or shower room
9. 10975/21
15/01/2021
Roman Aleksandrovich KASHURIN
1988
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 05/05/2014 – pending opposite-sex operators, video surveillance in a lavatory and/or shower room, detention in different cells with video surveillance Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
10. 11290/21
13/01/2021
Dmitriy Aleksandrovich DILSHNAYDER
1981
IK-6 Khabarovsk Region 26/01/2018 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
11. 11425/21
01/02/2021
Andrey Aleksandrovich SHMAKOV
1978
IK-29 Kirov Region 11/01/2018 – 26/01/2021 detention in different cells with video surveillance Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
12. 11469/17
03/02/2021
Ramil Rashitovich ISKHAKOV
1991
IK-25 Komi Republic, IK-31 Komi Republic 29/03/2019 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance, opposite-sex operators, video surveillance in a lavatory and/or shower room Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
13. 12875/21
09/02/2021
Sergey Aleksandrovich GORBUSHKOV
1973
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 12/06/2016 – 18/10/2021 opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
14. 13283/21
03/02/2021
Ruslan Khudaverdi ogly GADZHYSALIMOV
1984
IK-25 Komi Republic 06/05/2016 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance, opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
15. 14912/21
12/02/2021
Umidzhon Abduvakhidovich ABDULLAYEV
1986
IK-25 Komi Republic 29/11/2020 – pending opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
16. 16309/21
10/03/2021
Nidzhat Elikhan ogly EYNIYEV
1995
IK-25 Komi Republic 16/08/2019 – pending opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
17. 16902/21
10/03/2021
Aleksey Alekseyevich PRONENKO
1975
IK-5 Krasnoyarsk Region 08/04/2020 – pending detention in different cells with video surveillance, opposite-sex operators
18. 17184/21
10/03/2021
Vladimir Yuryevich SPANOVSKIY
1974
IK-25 Komi Republic 02/09/2012 – pending opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
19. 17187/21
10/03/2021
Ivan Vitalyevich LOBANOV
1972
IK-25 Komi Republic 02/11/2012 – pending opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
20. 21109/21
31/03/2021
Aleksandr Viktorovich TSARENKO
1977
IK-18 Yamalo‑Nenetskiy Region Period of detention at IK‑18:
21/08/2007 – 27/10/2020
Period under video surveillance:
January 2017 – 27/10/2020
opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –
21. 37373/21
02/07/2021
Mansur Mustafayevich EDILBIYEV
1986
IK-25 Komi Republic 2015 – pending opposite-sex operators Art. 13 – lack of any effective remedy in domestic law in respect of permanent video surveillance in detention facilities –

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