EIT: Hallinnollinen sakko ei estänyt rikosprosessia

1.10.2020 | Oikeusuutiset

Markku Fredman

The ne bis in idem principle applies only to criminal proceedings

In its decision in the case of Prina v. Romania (application no. 37697/13) the European Court of Human Rights has by a majority declared the application inadmissible.

The case concerned two penalties imposed on the applicant for acts allegedly committed in his capacity as head of the city’s technical department: an administrative fine and a suspended prison sentence.The Court reiterated that the first paragraph of Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 set forth the threecomponents of the right not to be tried or punished twice (ne bis in idem):

  • the two sets of proceedings had to be “criminal” in nature;
  • they had to concern the same facts; and
  • there had to beduplication of the proceedings.

In the present case, observing that the fine imposed on the applicant could not have been replaced by a custodial sentence in the event of non-payment or given rise to an entry in the criminal record, the Court concluded that the fine had not been a “criminal” penalty within the meaning of its case-law. Accordingly, Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 was not applicable in this case.



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