Anti-torture monitors have revealed that a “distuirbing proportion” of suspects allege physical ill-treatment by the police at the time of, or just after, arrest.
The Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) published today the report on its most recent visit to Switzerland, together with the response of the Swiss Government.
In the Canton of Geneva, a disturbing proportion of persons with whom the delegation spoke, including juveniles, made allegations, often supported by medical evidence, about physical ill-treatment by the police at the time of, or just after, apprehension. A few allegations of excessive use of force by police were received concerning the Canton of Vaud.
The CPT has recommended that action be taken to combat ill-treatment in the Canton of Geneva, through improved training and reinforcing existing safeguards. It also recommended that traumatic injury reports drawn up upon admission to Champ-Dollon Prison be automatically forwarded to an independent body empowered to conduct investigations.
In their reply, the Swiss authorities state that training courses for Geneva police already include elements on appropriate use of force, and that internal reporting mechanisms are functioning well and have led to disciplinary measures in a number of cases.