CASE OF KARMANNIKOV v. RUSSIA
(Application no. 2418/16)
8 June 2017
This judgment is final but it may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Karmannikov v. Russia,
The European Court of Human Rights (Third Section), sitting as a Committee composed of:
Luis López Guerra,
Jolien Schukking, judges,
and Karen Reid, Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 11 March 2017,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
1. The case originated in an application (no. 2418/16) against the Russian Federation lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms by a Russian national, Mr Leonid Karmannikov (“the applicant”), on 20 April 2016.
2. On 30 June 2016 the complaint under Article 3 of the Convention was communicated to the Russian Government (“the Government”) and the remainder of the application was declared inadmissible pursuant to Rule 54 § 3 of the Rules of Court.
3. The applicant has been detained in various departments of correctional colony no. 36/5 of Krasnoyarsk, Russia (hereinafter “IK-36/5”), since 30 May 2011.
4. The applicant disposed of between 2.2 and 5.2. square metres (sq.m.) of personal space during different periods of his detention.
5. The applicant complained of overcrowding, insufficient number of toilets and of the fact that the toilets were not separated from the rest of the cells.
I. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 3 OF THE CONVENTION
6. The applicant complained of the inadequate conditions of his detention. He relied on Article 3 of the Convention, which reads as follows:
“No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
7. The Court notes that the general conditions of the applicant’s detention in various departments of IK-36/5 were neither identical nor substantially similar. Therefore, the Court finds that his detention should not be regarded as a “continuing situation” for the purposes of calculation of the six-month time-limit (see, a contrario, Novinskiy v. Russia (dec.), no. 11982/02, 6 December 2007).
8. The applicant has introduced his application form with the Court on 20 April 2016. In compliance with the six-month rule, the Court can only consider the period of his detention starting from 20 October 2015. Thus, complaints about the preceding periods of detention should be considered as belated.
9. Starting from 20 October 2015 the applicant disposed of between 3.1 and 4.6 sq.m. of personal space, except for the period from 3 June to 12 August 2016 when he disposed of 2.2 sq.m. of personal space.
10. The Court finds that it cannot be considered that the conditions of the applicant’s detention during the period when he disposed of between 3.1 and 4.6 sq. m. of personal space amounted to inhuman or degrading treatment within the meaning of Article 3 of the Convention, taking into account, in particular the space factor and the lack of any other aspects making the physical conditions of the applicant’s detention inadequate (see Muršić v. Croatia [GC], no. 7334/13, § 106, ECHR 2016). It follows that the application in this part is manifestly ill-founded and must be rejected in accordance with Article 35 §§ 3 (a) and 4 of the Convention.
11. As to the complaint about the period of detention from 3 June to 12 August 2016 when the applicant had 2.2. sq.m. of personal space, the Court notes that this complaint is not manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention. It further notes that no other ground for declaring it inadmissible has been established. It must therefore be declared admissible.
12. The Court notes that from 3 June to 12 August 2016 the applicant was kept in detention in poor conditions. The Court refers to the principles established in its case-law regarding inadequate conditions of detention (see, for instance, Muršić, cited above, §§ 96-101). It reiterates in particular that a serious lack of space in a prison cell weighs heavily as a factor to be taken into account for the purpose of establishing whether the detention conditions described are “degrading” from the point of view of Article 3 and may disclose a violation, both alone or taken together with other shortcomings (see Muršić, cited above, §§ 122 -141, and Ananyev and Others v. Russia, nos. 42525/07 and 60800/08, §§ 149-159, 10 January 2012).
13. In the leading cases of Ananyev and Others v. Russia, nos. 42525/07 and 60800/08, 10 January 2012 and Butko v. Russia, no. 32036/10, 12 November 2015, the Court has already found a violation in respect of issues similar to those in the present case.
14. Having examined all the material submitted to it, the Court has not found any fact or argument capable of persuading it to reach a different conclusion on the admissibility and merits of this complaint. Having regard to its case-law on the subject, the Court considers that in the instant case the applicant’s conditions of detention from 3 June to 12 August 2016 were inadequate.
15. This complaint therefore discloses a breach of Article 3 of the Convention.
II. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION
16. Article 41 of the Convention provides:
“If the Court finds that there has been a violation of the Convention or the Protocols thereto, and if the internal law of the High Contracting Party concerned allows only partial reparation to be made, the Court shall, if necessary, afford just satisfaction to the injured party.”
17. Regard being had to the documents in its possession and to its case-law (see, in particular, Muršić v. Croatia [GC], no. 7334/13, § 181, ECHR 2016, and Ananyev and Others v. Russia, nos. 42525/07 and 60800/08, 10 January 2012), the Court considers it reasonable to award the applicant EUR 1,000, plus any tax that may be chargeable to him, in respect of non-pecuniary damage.
18. The Court considers it appropriate that the default interest rate should be based on the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank, to which should be added three percentage points.
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT, UNANIMOUSLY,
1. Declares the complaint concerning the inadequate conditions of detention from 3 June to 12 August 2016 admissible, and the remainder of the application inadmissible;
2. Holds that this complaint discloses a breach of Article 3 of the Convention;
(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicant, within three months, EUR 1,000 (one thousand euros), plus any tax that may be chargeable, in respect of non-pecuniary damage, to be converted into the currency of the respondent State at the rate applicable at the date of settlement;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amounts at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points.
Done in English, and notified in writing on 8 June 2017, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Reid Luis López