Judgment of the Constitutional Court of 25 June 2013 № 14-П on the review of constitutionality of  part 1 of Article 1, paragraph 1 of part 1, parts 6 and 7 of Article 3 of the Federal law “On Compensation for the violation of the Right to Court Examination Within a Reasonable Term  or the Right to Execution of Judicial Act Within a Reasonable Term”, parts 1 and 4 of Article 2441 and paragraph 1 of part 1 of Article 2446 of the Civil Procedure Code of the Russian Federation upon the complaint of citizen Popova

Legal issue: the constitutionality of rules which preclude the victim of crime from having recourse to court with the demand to award compensation for the violation of his right to criminal proceedings within a reasonable term, if as a result of criminal investigation instituted upon his application the suspects and the accused were not identified.  
Ratio decidendi: the constitutional guarantees of rights of man and the citizen in criminal proceedings do not hinge upon a formal recognition of a person as a victim of crime, but depend upon essential characteristics which identify this person as the one who needs protection. The denial of compensation is possible only when all the necessary measures for efficient criminal investigation have been taken. Therefore, the refusal to compensate is unconstitutional as long as there is an evidence that proper measures for identification of suspects and accused have not been taken, with due regard to the overall duration of proceedings in the criminal case. The federal legislator should make respective amendments in the legislation to specify the procedure and conditions for lodging claims by victims оf crimes regarding the violation of their right to such compensation.

Dissenting opinion:
  • The violation of constitutional rights was caused not by the content of disputed norms themselves, but by the law-application practice which gave them a wrong meaning.

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Subject area:
Court Proceedings criminal procedure