ECtHR releases decision in Abidov v. Russia (no. 52805/10) [Article 5 §§ 1 and 4 ECHR]

Friday, October 4, 2013

The applicant, Zhakhongir Abidov, is a Kyrgyzstan national who was born in 1981 and lives in Novosibirsk (Russia). An ethnic Uzbek, he has regularly travelled to Russia for work purposes since 2001. In June 2010 he was arrested in Novosibirsk as he was wanted by the Uzbek authorities on suspicion of setting up an extremist organisation whose aim is to overthrow the constitutional order in Uzbekistan; his extradition was also granted shortly thereafter. However, he has since been released in March 2011 when the Russian courts quashed the decision to extradite him. He was granted temporary asylum in August 2011. Relying in particular on Article 5 §§ 1 and 4 (right to liberty and security), he complained that his detention pending extradition from June 2010 to March 2011 had been unlawful and that it had taken the authorities 28 days to review his appeal of December 2010 against his detention order.
The Court found:

-No violation of Art. 5§1:
The Court considered that the applicant’s detention in the present case was authorized by and extended by a competent domestic court. The extension orders contained time-limits, in line with the requirements of Article 109 of the Code of Criminal Procedure and the applicant was advised of the possibility of appealing. The foregoing considerations were sufficient to enable the Court to conclude that there has been no violation of the requirement that detention be lawful under Article 5§1 of the Convention, in contrast to the cases relied on by the applicant.

-Violation of Art. 5§4:
The Court noted that it has not been substantiated that the applicant or his counsel contributed to the length of the appeal proceedings. It did not appear that any complex issues were involved in the determination of the lawfulness of the applicant’s detention by the appeal court. Neither was it argued that proper review of the applicant’s detention had required, for instance, the collection of additional observations and documents pertaining to the applicant’s personal circumstances. Apart from the issues discussed in the full reasoning of the decision, no other exceptional circumstances have been relied on by the Government to justify the delay. Having regard to the above, the Court concluded that the delay in the present case could not be considered compatible with the requirement of speediness laid down in Article 5 § 4 and therefore there had been a violation of Article 5 § 4 in the case in question.

-Rule 39 (interim measures)
In view of the findings regarding Art.3 the Court the Court found it appropriate to lift the interim measure indicated to the Respondent Government under Rule 39 of the Rules of Court

For the full text of the judgment please visit: ECtHR: Abidov v. Russia (no. 52805/10) 

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