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The ECtHR on Access to Case File

The Council of Europe’s website

Source: The Council of Europe’s website

I just finished translation of the ECtHR’s decision on admissibility of Application no. 42551/98  by Oleg Svinarenkov against Estonia, into the Estonian language. The facts of the case relate to deliberate homicide and unlawful possession of a firearm. The complaint to the ECtHR alleges violation of the following Articles of the European Convention of Human Rights: 5 § 3 (reasonable time), 5 § 4 (unlawful detention), 6 § 1 (fair trial), 6 § 1 (impartiality of courts in examining the case), 6 § 2 (presumption of innocence), 6 § 3 (b) (not enough time and adequate possibilities for the preparation of defence), 6 § 3 (d) (failure of the first instance court to grant the requests to hear witnesses and to conduct their confrontation), 8 (respect for private life and home), 13 (lack of an effective remedy).

I am thinking of the meaning of the following sentence in the decision: „In particular, under its case law the Convention does not entitle an accused to have access to the case file if he is represented by a lawyer“. What consequences could the sentence in practice have, for example, in the cases where the state determines the defence lawyer? Could that lead to my dependence on the defence lawyer to the extent that in the end s/he really could confess my guilt instead of me?

One Response to The ECtHR on Access to Case File

  1. That is a really strange sentence, I must admit.

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