CASE OF MATEI AND OTHERS v. ROMANIA
(Application no. 32435/13 and 17 other applications)
12 October 2017
This judgment is final but it may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Matei and Others v. Romania, (request for revision of the judgment of 7 April 2016),
The European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section), sitting as a Committee composed of:
Vincent A. De Gaetano,
Marko Bošnjak, judges,
and Liv Tigerstedt, Acting Deputy Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 21 September 2017,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
1. The case originated in eighteen applications against Romania lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) on the various dates given in the table appended to the judgment which was delivered on 7 April 2016.
2. The Court held in that judgment that there had been a violation of Article 3 of the Convention on account of inadequate conditions of detention. The Court also decided to award the applicants non-pecuniary damage in the amounts set out in the table appended to the judgment.
3. On 26 May 2016 the Government informed the Court that they had learned that Mr Vasile Boza, the applicant in application no. 54682/14, had died on 11 October 2015. They accordingly requested that the judgment be revised within the meaning of Rule 80 of the Rules of Court.
4. On 12 January 2017 the Court considered the revision request and decided to give Mr Boza’s potential heirs six weeks to submit any observations. No observations were received.
THE REQUEST FOR REVISION
5. The Government requested that the Court revise its judgment of 7 April 2016 which they had been unable to execute because Mr Boza had died before the judgment was adopted.
6. No heirs have shown an interest in pursuing the procedure.
7. The Court considers that the judgment of 7 April 2016 should be revised in accordance with Rule 80 of the Rules of Court, the relevant parts of which provide:
“A party may, in the event of the discovery of a fact which might by its nature have a decisive influence and which, when a judgment was delivered, was unknown to the Court and could not reasonably have been known to that party, request the Court ... to revise that judgment.
8. The Court notes that the applicant died before it adopted the judgment of 7 April 2016 and that no information has been provided to it concerning any heirs.
9. The Court considers that the applicant’s death constitutes “the discovery of a fact ... which when [the] judgment was delivered, was unknown to the Court”. It also constitutes a fact of “decisive influence” on the outcome of the judgment within the meaning of Rule 80 § 1. The Court is prepared to accept that this decisive fact “could not reasonably have been expected to be known to” the Government, which became aware of the applicant’s death on 20 May 2016 (see Manushaqe Puto and Others v. Albania (revision), nos. 604/07 and 3 others, §§ 9-10, 4 November 2014). They filed a request for a revision of the judgment on 26 May 2016, that is, within the time-limit provided for in Rule 80.
10. Article 37 § 1 of the Convention, in its relevant part, reads:
“1. The Court may at any stage of the proceedings decide to strike an application out of its list of cases where the circumstances lead to the conclusion that ...
(c) ... it is no longer justified to continue the examination of the application.”
11. The Court notes that it has been its practice to strike applications out of the list of cases when no heirs or close relatives have expressed a wish to pursue them (see Eremiášová and Pechová v. the Czech Republic (revision), no. 23944/04, § 10, 20 June 2013). It further finds no special circumstances relating to respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require it to continue the examination of the application.
12. In these circumstances, the Court accepts the Government’s request to revise the judgment of 7 April 2016. Accordingly, it decides to strike the application no. 54682/14 lodged by Mr Vasile Boza out of its list.
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT, UNANIMOUSLY,
1. Decides to revise its judgment of 7 April 2016 in respect of application no. 54682/14;
2. Decides to strike application no. 54682/14, lodged by Mr Vasile Boza, out of its list of cases.
Done in English, and notified in writing on 12 October 2017, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Tigerstedt Vincent A. De
Acting Deputy Registrar President