CASE OF MARTYNCHUK AND OTHERS v. UKRAINE (European Court of Human Rights) 69195/17 and 4 other

The applicants complained of the unlawful detention.


FIFTH SECTION
CASE OF MARTYNCHUK AND OTHERS v. UKRAINE
(Application no. 69195/17 and 4 other – see appended list)
JUDGMENT
STRASBOURG
1 December 2022

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

In the case of Martynchuk and Others v. Ukraine,

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

Mārtiņš Mits, President,
Mattias Guyomar,
Mykola Gnatovskyy, judges,
and Viktoriya Maradudina, Acting Deputy Section Registrar,

Having deliberated in private on 10 November 2022,

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

PROCEDURE

1. The case originated in applications against Ukraine 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 Ukrainian 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 unlawful detention. They 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 § 1 of the Convention

6. The applicants complained principally of the unlawful detention.They relied, expressly or in substance, on Article 5 § 1 of the Convention, which reads as follows:

Article 5 § 1

“1. Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be deprived of his liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure prescribed by law:

(c) the lawful arrest or detention of a person effected for the purpose of bringing him before the competent legal authority on reasonable suspicion of having committed an offence or when it is reasonably considered necessary to prevent his committing an offence or fleeing after having done so;”

7. The Court reiterates that Article 5 of the Convention is, together with Articles 2, 3 and 4, in the first rank of the fundamental rights that protect the physical security of the individual, and as such its importance is paramount. Its key purpose is to prevent arbitrary or unjustified deprivation of liberty (see Buzadji v. the Republic of Moldova [GC], no. 23755/07, § 84, ECHR 2016 (extracts), with further references).

8. Where the “lawfulness” of detention is in issue, including the question whether “a procedure prescribed by law” has been followed, the Convention refers essentially to the national law and lays down the obligation to conform to the substantive and procedural rules thereof. Compliance with the national law is not, however, sufficient: Article 5 § 1 requires in addition that any deprivation of liberty should be in keeping with the purpose of protecting the individual from arbitrariness (see S., V. and A. v. Denmark [GC], nos. 35553/12, 36678/12 and 36711/12, § 74, 22 October 2018, with further references).

9. The Court found violations in respect of issues similar to those in the present case in the leading cases set out in the appended table.

10. 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 applicants’ detention was not in accordance with Article 5 § 1 of the Convention.

11. These complaints as set out in the appended table are therefore admissible and disclose a breach of Article 5 § 1 of the Convention.

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

12. The applicants submitted other complaints which also raised issues under the Convention, given the relevant well-established case-law of the Court (see 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 violations of the Convention in the light of its findings in Korban v. Ukraine, no. 26744/16, §§ 158-81, 4 July 2019; Kharchenko v. Ukraine, no. 40107/02, § 85, 10 February 2011; G.B. and Others v. Turkey, no. 4633/15, § 176, 17 October 2019; Tymoshenko v. Ukraine, no. 49872/11, §§ 286-87, 30 April 2013; and Kotiy v. Ukraine, no. 28718/09, § 55, 5 March 2015.

IV. REMAINING COMPLAINTS

13. In applications nos. 69195/17, 50594/18 and 50595/18, the applicants also raised other complaints under various Articles of the Convention.

14. The Court has examined these complaints 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, they 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

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, Malyk v. Ukraine, no. 37198/10, 29 January 2015), the Court considers it reasonable to award the sums indicated in the appended table and rejects any additional claims for just satisfaction raised by the applicants.

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 unlawful 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. 69195/17, 50594/18 and 50595/18 inadmissible;

3. Holds that these complaints disclose a breach of Article 5 § 1 of the Convention concerning the unlawful 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;

6. Dismissesthe remainder of the applicants’ claims for just satisfaction.

Done in English, and notified in writing on 1 December 2022, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.

Viktoriya Maradudina                     Mārtiņš Mits
Acting Deputy Registrar                  President

____________

APPENDIX
List of applications raising complaints under Article 5 § 1 of the Convention
(unlawful detention)

No. Application no.
Date of introduction
Applicant’s name
Year of birth
Representative’s name and location Period of unlawful detention Specific defects Relevant domestic decision Other complaints under well-established case-law Amount awarded for non-pecuniary damage per applicant
(in euros)[1]
Amount awarded for costs and expenses per application
(in euros)[2]
1. 69195/17
06/09/2017
Stanislav Oleksandrovych MARTYNCHUK
1988
Sobyna Pavlo Mykolayovych
Okhtyrka
11/08/2016 to 12/08/2016 no legal basis for arrest without a prior court decision (Strogan v. Ukraine, no. 30198/11, §§ 88-89, 6 October 2016, and Grubnyk v. Ukraine, no. 58444/15, §§ 83-85, 17 September 2020) arrest report of 11/08/2016 Art. 5 (5) – lack of, or inadequate, compensation for unlawful arrest or detention 2,340 250
2. 9655/18
12/02/2018
Igor Grygorovych BONDARENKO
1966
Dulskyy Oleksandr Leonidovych
Kyiv
24/05/2017 to 25/05/2017 no legal basis for arrest without a prior court decision (Strogan v. Ukraine, no. 30198/11, §§ 88-89, 6 October 2016, and Grubnyk v. Ukraine, no. 58444/15, §§ 83-85, 17 September 2020) arrest report of 24/05/2017 Art. 5 (3) – lack of relevant and sufficient reasons for detention – detention from 24/05/2017 to 12/09/2017 on the basis of stereotyped reasoning without any indication of individual circumstances related to the applicant’s situation. 2,600 250
3. 50594/18

27/09/2018

Volodymyr Mykolayovych GREBENYUK

1980

Bondarenko Igor Valeriyovych

Kyiv

29/03/2018 to 31/03/2018 no legal basis for arrest without a prior court decision (Strogan v. Ukraine, no. 30198/11, §§ 88-89, 6 October 2016, and Grubnyk v. Ukraine, no. 58444/15, §§ 83-85, 17 September 2020) arrest report of 29/03/2018 Art. 5 (4) – deficiencies in proceedings for review of the lawfulness of detention – decision of the Shevchenkivskyy District Court of Kyiv of 31/03/2018 – the court failed to meaningfully examine the applicant’s complaint concerning the lawfulness of his arrest; the court did not address the applicant’s core arguments related to the lawfulness of his detention, having completely disregarded them 2,340 250
4. 50595/18

27/09/2018

Vadym Valeriyovych MOSKALENKO

1993

Borysov Maksym Petrovych

Kyiv

29/03/2018 to 30/03/2018 no legal basis for arrest without a prior court decision (Strogan v. Ukraine, no. 30198/11, §§ 88-89, 6 October 2016, and Grubnyk v. Ukraine, no. 58444/15, §§ 83-85, 17 September 2020) arrest report of 29/03/2018 Art. 5 (4) – deficiencies in proceedings for review of the lawfulness of detention – decisions of the Shevchenkivskyy District Court of Kyiv of 30/03/2018 and 31/03/2018 – the court failed to meaningfully examine the applicant’s complaint about the lawfulness of his arrest; the court did not address the applicant’s core arguments related to the lawfulness of his detention, having completely disregarded them 2,340 250
5. 20292/20

12/03/2020

FedirFedorovych FEDORCHUK

1971

Zakharov Oleksiy Volodymyrovych

Kyiv

17/08/2019 to 19/08/2019 no legal basis for arrest without a prior court decision (Strogan v. Ukraine, no. 30198/11, §§ 88-89, 6 October 2016, and Grubnyk v. Ukraine, no. 58444/15, §§ 83-85, 17 September 2020) arrest report of 17/08/2019 Art. 5 (3) – lack of relevant and sufficient reasons for detention – detention from 17/08/2019 to 14/08/2020, use of stereotyped formula without assessment of the individual circumstances of the applicant’s case;

Art. 5 (4) – deficiencies in proceedings for review of the lawfulness of detention – failure to examine the lawfulness of the applicant’s arrest of 17/08/2019 by the Pecherskyy District Court of Kyiv and the Kyiv City Court of Appeal; the courts did not address the applicant’s core arguments related to the lawfulness of his detention, having completely disregarded them

2,600 250

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

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

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