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Court: Russia breached human rights law by caging remand prisoners during court hearings

Caging remand prisoners during court hearings is degrading, human rights judges have told Russian authorities.

In a complaint brought by Aleksandr Svinarenko and Valentin Slyadnev (Svinarenko and Slyadnev v. Russia – application nos. 32541/08 and 43441/08), the court found that holding the applicants in a metal cage during court hearings on their case, amounted to degrading treatment for which there could be no justification. Such treatment constituted in itself an affront to human dignity in breach of Article 3.

In its 17 July Grand Chamber judgment in the case which is final, the European Court of Human Rights held,unanimously, that there had been:

a violation of Article 3 (prohibition of torture and of inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment) of the European Convention on Human Rights;

and,

a violation of Article 6 § 1 (right to a fair trial within a reasonable time).

Just satisfaction (Article 41)

The court held that Russia was to pay each applicant 10,000 euros (EUR) in respect of non-pecuniary damage, and it was to pay EUR 2,000 to Svinarenko and EUR 4,000 to Slyadnev in respect of costs and expenses.

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