AS TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF
by Dimitar Dimitrov DIMITROV
The European Court of Human Rights (Fifth Section), sitting on 15 September 2009 as a Chamber composed of:
Peer Lorenzen, President,
Mirjana Lazarova Trajkovska,
Zdravka Kalaydjieva, judges,
and Claudia Westerdiek, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 23 March 2006,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicant, Mr Dimitar Dimitrov Dimitrov, is a Bulgarian national who was born in 1970 and lives in Pleven.
The circumstances of the case
The facts of the case, as submitted by the applicant, may be summarised as follows.
On 28 April 1999 the District Court found the applicant guilty of several thefts committed in the condition of aggravated recidivism. The court sentenced him to fifteen years’ imprisonment by determining the aggregate of the terms of imprisonment imposed for each theft.
The applicant was placed in Pleven prison in 2003 where he currently serves his sentence. He alleged that the conditions of detention there were unbearable and amounted to humiliating and degrading treatment. The applicant maintained in particular that: 1) he had to share a cell of 35 m2 with 15 other inmates; 2) that prisoners used buckets for relieving their needs at night (from 8:30 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. in winter and from 10:30 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. in summer; during the day the cells were unlocked and the prisoners could go out); 3) once a week access to hot water was provided for a very limited period – for four hours, which was not sufficient considering the great number of inmates (144 persons) and the three showers available; 4) there was no fresh air in the cell and they had to hang out their laundry to dry in the cells; 5) the artificial light was insufficient which made reading difficult; 6) the floor in the cell was made of concrete; 7) medical care was available only twice a week and during the rest of the time first aid could not be received; 8) the food was insufficient in quantity and quality.
A. Complaint under Article 3 of the Convention about the conditions of detention in Pleven Prison
The applicant complained under Article 3 of the Convention about the conditions of his detention in Pleven Prison.
The relevant part of Article 3 of the Convention provides:
“No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
The Court considers that it cannot, on the basis of the case file, determine the admissibility of this complaint and that it is therefore necessary, in accordance with Rule 54 § 2 (b) of the Rules of Court, to give notice of this part of the application to the respondent Government.
B. The remainder of the applicant’s complaints
The Court has examined the remainder of the applicant’s complaints as submitted by him. However, in the light of all the material in its possession, and in so far as the matters complained of are within its competence, the Court finds that they do not disclose any appearance of a violation of the rights and freedoms set out in the Convention or its Protocols.
It follows that this part of the application must be rejected as being manifestly ill-founded, pursuant to Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention.
For these reasons, the Court by a majority
Decides to adjourn the examination of the applicant’s complaint concerning the conditions of detention in Pleven Prison;
Declares the remainder of the application inadmissible.
Claudia Westerdiek Peer Lorenzen Registrar President