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Case Law 63154/00 (03/03/2008)

Type: Judgment

Authority: European Authorities: European Court of human rights

Date: 03/03/2008

Subject: The applicant, Gaetano Marturana, is an Italian national who was born in 1965 and lives in Agrigente (Italy).He was detained pending trial on suspicion of: belonging to a criminal organisation engaged in usury and extortion; attempted murder; and illegally carrying a weapon. The case concerned, in particular, the failure to notify the applicant of the charges against him because the order for his detention had never been served on him. Relying on Articles 5 (right to liberty and security) and 6 (right to a fair trial), he complained that his detention had been unfair and that he had been unable to exercise his defence rights. He also alleged that he had been unable to correspond freely with his family, his lawyer and the Court, and that he had been subjected to ill-treatment on account of the conditions of his detention. He relied on Articles 3 (prohibition of inhuman and degrading treatment), 8 (right to respect for private and family life), 10 (freedom of expression), 13 (right to an effective remedy) and 34 (right of individual application) and Article 2 of Protocol No. 4 (freedom of movement).The Court considered that, quite clearly, a misunderstanding had led the domestic authorities to believe that the charges had been served on the applicant; that did not mean, however, that his subsequent detention had been unlawful. It held unanimously that there had been no violation of Article 5 § 1. However, it noted that there had been excessive delays in the examination of his applications for a review of the lawfulness of his detention and therefore held unanimously that there had been a violation of Article 5 § 4. It also found that the applicant's correspondence had not been subject to censorship and that there had thus been no legal basis for “keeping hold of” letters from him. The Court therefore held unanimously that there had been a violation of Articles 8 and 13 and that it was not necessary to examine whether there had been a violation of Articles 10 and 34.

Parties: Marturana c/ Italia

Classification: Dignity - Art. 4 Inhuman treatments - Degrading treatments - Freedoms - Art. 6 Personal liberty - Personal security - Art. 7 Privacy - Communications - Justice - Art. 47 Justice: remedy