Ruling of the Constitutional Court of 19 November 2015 № 2732-O on refusal to accept a petition of citizen K.V.Svetlov

Legislation in question: Article 32.8, Part 1 of the Code of Administrative Offences.

Legal issue: Is it permissible that a person subject to investigation regarding an administrative offence be held under an administrative arrest prior to issuing a verdict in the administrative offence case?

Ratio decidendi: The rule of immediate execution of the administrative offence arrest warrant is counterbalanced by an existence of guarantees for an expedited hearing of complaint of a person subject to such punishment. The petitioner failed to provide any documented proof that he had no immediate opportunity after an issuance of a reasoned verdict on his administrative arrest to submit an expedited appeal against such decision.

Dissenting opinion:
  • I cannot agree with the “refusal” definition in the Constitutional Court ruling on the case of citizen Svetlov, since I believe that the question in his appeal is constitutionally significant - an allowance of administrative responsibility (punishment) of persons whose guilt in administrative offence has not been determined by enacted court verdict for an administrative arrest. Immediate fulfillment of administrative arrest in accordance with a ruling, which has no properties of res judicata, causes some serious concerns in its compatibility with the Constitution . Moreover, the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Basic Freedoms is included into the legal system of Russia in accordance with Article 15 (Part 4) of the Russian Constitution, and is given а collisional priority as against the laws. The international legal obligations of Russia, originating from its Article 3, Point 3, demand that Presumption of Innocence is maintained not only in the cases of criminal, but also in the cases of administrative responsibility.

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Subject area:
Public Law administrative liability