by Ali GÜNEŞ
The European Court of Human Rights (Second Section), sitting on 15 September 2009 as a Chamber composed of:
Ireneu Cabral Barreto,
Işıl Karakaş, judges,
and Sally Dollé, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 26 September 2003,
Having regard to the partial decision of 18 November 2008,
Having regard to the observations submitted by the respondent Government and the observations in reply submitted by the applicant,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicant, Mr Ali Güneş, is a Turkish national who was born in 1957 and is currently detained in the Kahramanmaraş E-type prison. He is represented before the Court by Mr F. Kılınç, a lawyer practising in Kahramanmaraş. The Turkish Government (“the Government”) are represented by their Agent.
The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.
On 10 April 1993 the applicant’s brother allegedly killed a certain A.D.
On the same day, the applicant was taken into police custody on suspicion of having incited his brother to kill A.D.
On 12 April 1993 a single judge at the Pazarcık Magistrate’s Court ordered the applicant’s pre-trial detention and issued an arrest warrant in absentia in respect of the applicant’s brother, who had absconded.
On 30 April 1993 the Kahramanmaraş Principal Public Prosecutor filed a bill of indictment against the applicant and his brother, accusing the latter of committing murder and the former of incitement to murder.
On 10 June 1993 the Kahramanmaraş Assize Court commenced the proceedings and on 12 August 1993 it ordered the applicant’s release pending trial.
From 14 September 1993 until 12 August 2002, the first-instance court held approximately fifty hearings but did not take any decisions pending the arrest of the applicant’s fugitive brother.
On 9 September 2002 the applicant was arrested, following his brother’s arrest on 12 August 2002.
On 16 September 2002 the Kahramanmaraş Assize Court found the applicant and his brother guilty as charged and sentenced them both to death, commuted to life imprisonment.
On 28 April 2003 the Court of Cassation upheld the judgment of the first-instance court.
In his original application, the applicant complained under Article 6 of the Convention of an erroneous conviction in fact and law, as well as the length of the criminal proceedings against him.
On 18 November 2008 the Court declared the application partly inadmissible and decided to communicate to the Government the complaint concerning the length of the criminal proceedings.
By letter dated 27 March 2009 the Government’s observations were sent to the applicant’s representative, who was requested to submit any observations in reply by 7 May 2009.
On 4 May 2009 the applicant personally sent a letter to the Court, stating that he had lodged his application with a view to complaining about his unfair conviction and not about the length of proceedings.
The Court notes that the applicant’s complaint regarding his erroneous conviction has already been examined and declared inadmissible on 18 November 2008 as being manifestly ill-founded pursuant to Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention. The Court further notes the applicant’s letter of 4 May 2009, in which he states in an unambiguous manner that he does not wish to complain about the length of the proceedings.
In the light of this unequivocal declaration, the Court concludes that the applicant no longer wishes to complain of the length of the proceedings and, thus, to pursue this remaining aspect of his application, as understood by Article 37 § 1 (a) of the Convention.
Furthermore, in accordance with Article 37 § 1 in fine, the Court finds no special circumstances regarding respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require the continued examination of the case. In view of the above, it is appropriate to strike the case out of the list.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Decides to strike the remainder of the application out of its list of cases.
Sally Dollé Françoise Tulkens