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News > Press Releases 2013 > ECHR confirmed the Ombudsman’s findings concerning humiliating treatment

ECHR confirmed the Ombudsman’s findings concerning humiliating treatment

07. 08. 2013

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg last week convicted the Czech Republic of inhuman and humiliating treatment of a detained man at a police station, which is the first similar verdict related to Czechs.

In 2010, the police closed the 58-year-old man from As, west Bohemia, in a cell and tied him up in a painful way. He was on his way home from a bar where he had been drinking alcohol when a municipal police patrol stopped him and asked to see his identity card. He had no identity documents with him, but told the patrol that he lived just fifty metres away and that they could accompany him home where he could prove his identity. The patrol, however, insisted on taking him by car to police station, where he provided his name and address. He was then told that he had committed the administrative offence of urinating in a public place. A breathalyser test gave a result of 2 per mille of alcohol in his blood. After establishing his identity and the level of alcohol in his blood, the police invited him to enter another room. He refused to do so and asked why he had been brought to the police station. A police officer twisted his arm, handcuffed him and led him to a police cell where he was handcuffed to an iron ring on the wall by one hand. After some time, he started kicking in order to attract the attention of some other police officers who might free him. However, the same police officer entered the cell, stretched his free arm and handcuffed it to an iron ring on the other side of the cell. His legs were also tied with a leader strap. After 50 minutes in the cell when he calmed down, he was released.

The only institution to point to the police's mistake was Ombudsman Pavel Varvarovsky. The Ombudsman issued a report finding that the police had violated the Police Act in several respects. In the Ombudsman’s view, there and been no legal grounds for detaining the applicant at all, co it looked as though he had been detained as a punishment for his drunken behaviour.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg last week convicted the Czech Republic of inhuman and humiliating treatment of a detained man at a police station, which is the first similar verdict related to Czechs.

The European Court of Human Rights has not granted any compensation to him for now as his request for it is being handled by a court in the Czech Republic.

The Strasbourg verdict has not yet taken effect.

Judgement: http://hudoc.echr.coe.int/sites/eng/pages/search.aspx?i=001-123362 

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