View Adopted: 2021.11.05
The author, a national of the Netherlands, claimed that the State party violated his rights under articles 2(3) and 14(5) of the Covenant, by restricting his right to appeal in a meaningful way. The author also cited the Committee’s jurisprudence in Mennen v. Netherlands and Timmer v. Netherland, which dealt with violations of article 14 (5) of the Covenant.
The author was summoned to appear before the District Court of Arnhem on 28 August 2007, on a suspicion of assaulting an on-duty police officer or obstructing legitimate actions carried out by a police officer, along with failing to comply with an order to identify himself. Under the State party’s laws, assaulting an on-duty police officer is an indictable offence, while failing to comply with an order to identify oneself is a misdemeanour. The author’s hearing was delayed to 10 October 2017, in order to allow him the opportunity to read the case file. The author represented himself during the hearings.
On 10 October 2007, the police judge of the District Court convicted the author of assaulting an on-duty police officer and failing to comply with an order to identify himself. The author was ordered to pay fines of 170 euros and 50 euros for the respective offences. In the oral judgment, the judge provided no evidentiary reasons for the author’s conviction. The author requested leave to appeal the decision of the police judge of the District Court. The parliamentary history of the process of drafting section 410 (a) of the Code of Criminal Procedure expressly states that in cases such as the author’s, the first instance decision will not be supplemented with evidence or a trial transcript, either at the time the judgment is pronounced or after an appeal is filed. The President denied the author’s request for leave to appeal, and based his decision on the court documents and on section 410 (a) of the Code of Criminal Procedure. On March 19 2013, the author submitted an extraordinary request to the Supreme Court to revise the lower court decision, which was rejected by the court.
The Committee noted that the author submitted the communication more than five years after the date on which he exhausted domestic remedies and more than three years after the issuance of the decision of the European Court of Human Rights, and has not provided an explanation for the delay in submission, the Committee considered that the communication constituted an abuse of the right to submission. Accordingly, the Committee declared the communication inadmissible.
By Sugandha Sawhney