EIT: Velvollisuus ilmoittaa ulkomainen pankkitili rangaistuksen uhalla ei loukannut itsekriminointisuojaa

6.10.2022 | Oikeusuutiset

Markku Fredman

Forced disclosure of foreign bank account documents did not amount to disrespect of privilege against self-incrimination

In today’s Chamber judgment in the case of De Legé v. the Netherlands (application no. 58342/15) the European Court of Human Rights held, unanimously, that there had been:

  • no violation of Article 6 § 1 (right to a fair trial) of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The case concerned tax fines imposed on the applicant, a Dutch national, following his failure to comply with his legal obligation to provide all relevant information for the purpose of tax levying, including documents relating to a bank account he held in Luxembourg. As those documents had eventually been obtained from him under threat of substantial penalty payments, the applicant alleged disrespect of the privilege against self-incrimination, the nemo tenetur principle.

The Court found that the use of the bank statements and portfolio summaries concerning the applicant’s foreign bank account that had been obtained from him by a judicial order did not fall within the scope of the protection of the privilege against self-incrimination. The Court therefore concluded that it could not be said that, due to the use of those documents, Mr de Legé had been deprived of a fair trial.

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