FIRST SECTION

DECISION

AS TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF

Application no. 14139/03 
by Haci Bayram BOLAT 
against Russia

The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting on 8 July 2004 as a Chamber composed of:

Mr C.L. Rozakis, President
 Mrs F. Tulkens
 Mrs N. Vajić
 Mrs S. Botoucharova
 Mr A. Kovler
 Mr V. Zagrebelsky,  
 Mrs E. Steiner, judges
and Mr S. Quesada, Deputy Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application lodged on 14 April 2003,

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 FACTS

The applicant, Mr Haci Bayram Bolat, is a Turkish national, who was born in 1974 and who lived, until his deportation on 7 August 2003, in Nalchik in the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic of the Russian Federation. At present the applicant lives in Kapaklı, Turkey. He is represented before the Court by Mr I. Kuchukov, a lawyer practising in Nalchik. The respondent Government are represented by Mr P. Laptev, Representative of the Russian Federation at the European Court of Human Rights.

A.  The circumstances of the case

The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.

Since 1998 the applicant, an ethnic Kabardinian, lived in the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic of the Russian Federation on the basis of a long-term residence permit (вид на жительство).

1.  Extension of the residence permit

In early 2000 the applicant’s residence permit was lost or stolen. On 22 February 2000 he applied to the Passports and Visas Service of the Ministry of the Interior of the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic (паспортно-визовая служба МВД КБР) to replace the permit and extend its validity until 5 August 2003.

After a few months’ delay the applicant was issued a new residence permit valid until 9 July 2000. The shortened term of validity was explained by reference to a recommendation of the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation, which considered a longer extension “inappropriate” because the circumstances surrounding the loss of the first permit had not been clear enough.

The applicant complained to a court.

On 1 June 2000 the Nalchik Town Court (Нальчикский городской суд) allowed the applicant’s complaint and ordered the Passports and Visas Service to extend the applicant’s residence permit until 4 August 2003.

2.  The applicant found guilty of a violation of residence regulations 

On 7 June 2002 the applicant was considered to have breached residence regulations. The applicant did not appeal against the administrative charge to a competent court.

From 5 December 2002 the applicant’s registered place of residence was a flat on the Kulieva prospect in Nalchik. His registration at that address was valid until 4 August 2003. The first department of the interior of Nalchik (Первый отдел внутренних дел г. Нальчика) placed a stamp to that effect in the applicant’s residence permit.

On 11 December 2002 the applicant was at his friend’s flat on the Furmanova street in Nalchik where he had stayed overnight. At 9 a.m. a man and a woman entered the flat. The woman introduced herself as a police inspector of the second department of the interior of Nalchik; the man did not identify himself. The man and woman claimed that they were conducting a “check-up of identity documents”. The applicant’s friend, Kh., refused them entry to the flat, but they entered nevertheless. They proceeded to the room where the applicant was and asked him to produce identity documents. On seeing a different address in his residence permit, the woman asked the applicant why he did not live at home. The woman invited the applicant to come with them to the police station, which the applicant did. The applicant submits that he proceeded to the police station peacefully and of his own will. He stayed there while a report was being drawn up.

On the same day Inspector A. drew up a report on the commission of an administrative offence and a decision to fine the applicant RUR 500 (approximately EUR 20) for “residing on the Furmanova street without registering his place of stay” which was an offence under Article 18.8 of the Administrative Offences Code.

The applicant submits that his rights and obligations were not explained to him, his explanations were not reported in the documents, no written evidence of the offence or statements from witnesses were attached to the report and, finally, that he did not countersign the documents and the field indicating his refusal to countersign was also left empty. The applicant contends that the decision should have been taken by a first instance court of Nalchik and not by a police officer.

Inspector A. asked the applicant to pay the fine on the spot. The applicant refused and complained to a court.

On 24 December 2002 the Nalchik Town Court heard the applicant’s complaint. The court recalled that the Russian Constitution guarantees to anyone who lawfully resides in its territory the freedom to move freely and choose his or her place of residence and stay and that this provision also applies to foreign nationals. The court took statements from the applicant, his friend Kh. and another person who had been in the flat on the Furmanova street on 11 December 2002; they all maintained that the applicant had paid a visit to his friend and that the applicant had not lived in Kh.’s flat. On the contrary, Ms Sh., the owner of the flat on the Kulieva prospect, confirmed that she had provided her flat to the applicant to live in and the applicant had been duly registered at her address. The Town Court came to the conclusion that no administrative offence had been committed and annulled the decision of 11 December 2002.

The police appealed against the judgment.

On 20 January 2003 the Civil Division of the Supreme Court of the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic (судебная коллегия по гражданским делам Верховного Суда КБР) quashed the judgment of 24 December 2002 on procedural grounds and remitted the case to a differently composed bench.

On 26 February 2003 the Nalchik Town Court dismissed the applicant’s complaint. The court reasoned as follows:

“The administrative proceedings against [the applicant] were initiated and a fine in the amount of 500 roubles was imposed on him not only on the basis of the obvious fact that [the applicant] had been outside his place of residence established by inspector A., but also because a report drawn up by O. and Sh., district police officers of the third department of the interior of Nalchik, on [the applicant’s] residence in the Furmanova street flat between 20 November and 11 December 2002... [These police officers] gave statements as witnesses and stated that they had learnt from operative sources that a foreigner, named Bolat Haci-Bayram, secretly lived in Kh.’s flat...

At the same time the complainant and witnesses Kh. and Ms Sh. failed to convincingly show the court that [the applicant] had only stayed overnight at Kh.’s on the night of 10-11 December 2002 because of a heavy frost outside and the need to return to a remote district of the town. In particular, Ms Sh. did not inform the court on what date she visited [the applicant] on the Kulieva prospect and how many days before the administrative offence report was drawn up he could have stayed at Kh.’s... Besides, the court takes into account that the witnesses examined on behalf of the complainant are his relatives or friends and might have an interest in the outcome of the case. On the contrary, the court has examined a report by [police officer Kha.] which stated that during checks he could not confirm the applicant’s residence either at the old or at the new address.”

The applicant appealed against the judgment. In the grounds of appeal the applicant’s lawyer alleged, inter alia, that the fine had been imposed in the absence of the applicant by a police officer who had not been competent to do so, the report on an administrative offence had not been corroborated by any evidence and the sanction had not therefore been imposed in accordance with law. The lawyer also submitted that the first-instance court erred in its assessment of the statements by police officers O. and Sh. who had denied that they had known the applicant, and that the court admitted in evidence a report by officer Kha. who had not been examined before or at the hearing.

On 19 March 2003 the Supreme Court of the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic upheld the judgment of 26 February 2003. The Supreme Court rejected the applicant’s arguments that he had been unlawfully fined because he had allegedly failed to raise these issues before the first instance court. The Supreme Court did not address the applicant’s inability to question officer Kha. Instead, it found that “on 30 November 2002 Mr Af., district inspector of the first department of the interior of Nalchik, reported to his superior that the flat on the Kulieva prospect had been empty”. The remainder of the Supreme Court’s reasoning was similar to that of the first instance court.

On 31 March 2003 the applicant and his lawyer requested the Presidium of the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria to lodge an application for supervisory review. On 6 June 2003 the request was refused.

3.  Annulment of the applicant’s residence permit

On 4 February 2003 the applicant applied by mail for an extension of his residence permit to 30 July 2007. On 6 March 2003 the Passports and Visas Service informed him that he had to apply for an extension in person. The applicant responded in writing that there was no such requirement in the domestic law.

On 29 May 2003 the town prosecutor of Nalchik (прокурор  
г. Нальчика
) sent a request to remedy a violation of Russian laws (представление об устранении нарушений законов РФ) to the head of the Passports and Visas Service. The prosecutor requested that the applicant’s residence permit be annulled and he be expelled because he had been found guilty of administrative offences on two occasions during the previous year.

On 30 May 2003 Inspector Sh. of the Passports and Visas Service ordered the annulment of the applicant’s residence permit because of repetitive violations of residence regulations in the Russian Federation. The order was approved by the Minister of the Interior of Kabardino-Balkaria. The applicant was ordered to leave the Russian Federation within fifteen days.

On 9 June 2003 the Nalchik Town Court stayed the execution of the order of 30 May 2003 pending the Supreme Court’s decision on the applicant’s request for supervisory review.

4.  The applicant’s deportation

On 7 August 2003 at about 10 a.m. several officers of the Ministry of the Interior and the Federal Security Service entered the applicant’s flat on the Kulieva prospect. Some of them wore face masks. They did not identify themselves and they did not present any search or deportation warrant.

The applicant was handcuffed and taken by car to Nalchik airport where he was placed on a flight to Istanbul, Turkey.

5.  Subsequent developments

On 8 October 2003 a judge of the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria quashed the decision on administrative charge of 11 December 2002 and the judgment of the Nalchik Town Court of 26 February 2003 because there was no lawful evidence showing that the applicant had lived outside the place of his residence registration. He noted that the reports by police officers O. and Sh. had been based on hearsay and officer Kha.’s report had not confirmed the applicant’s residence on the Furmanova street, either. Furthermore, he pointed out that the district court’s requirement to prove that the applicant had only been a guest on the Furmanova street ran contrary to the presumption of innocence enunciated in Article 1.5 of the Administrative Offences Code. Finally, he confirmed that the administrative charge against the applicant had been examined by an officer of the police station having no territorial jurisdiction over the Furmanova street and this fact alone rendered the sanction unlawful. The judge ordered the termination of the administrative proceedings against the applicant. The order was not appealed against.

On 28 October 2003 the Nalchik Town Court heard the applicant’s complaint against the order of 30 May 2003 annulling his residence permit. The court noted that a residence permit could be annulled in case of repetitive violations of residence regulations, but this provision was no longer applicable as the administrative proceedings against the applicant had been terminated by the final decision of 8 October 2003. The court declared the order of 30 May 2003 null and void and ordered the Passports and Visas Service to extend the applicant’s residence permit for five years, starting from 4 August 2003. The judgment was not appealed against and became final on 10 November 2003.

On 18 November 2003 the applicant’s representative wrote to the Minister of the Interior of Kabardino-Balkaria and invited him to take measures to remedy the violations of the applicant’s rights. He enclosed the above judgments and the writ of execution. No response has been received to date.

In a separate set of proceedings, the applicant’s representative attempted to bring criminal charges against the officials who had deported the applicant by force. On 25 August 2003 he complained to the Nalchik town prosecutor’s office about the allegedly unlawful search at the applicant’s home and his deportation to Turkey. On 30 August 2003 his complaint was rejected because no indications of a criminal offence were established. On 20 November 2003 the head of the investigations department of the Kabardino-Balkaria prosecutor’s office annulled the decision of 30 August and remitted the complaint for additional investigation. On 3 December 2003 a Nalchik town prosecutor’s office again refused to prefer criminal charges for the lack of indications of a criminal offence. This decision was subsequently quashed, but on 11 December 2003 a new order for the termination of the criminal proceedings was made.

B.  Relevant domestic law

Constitutional guarantees

Article 27 of the Russian Constitution provides that everyone lawfully within the territory of the Russian Federation shall have the right to move freely and choose his or her place of stay or residence. Article 62 § 3 guarantees foreign nationals in the Russian Federation the same rights and obligations as Russian nationals subject to exceptions set out in a federal law or an international treaty, to which Russia is a party.

Residence regulations applicable to foreign nationals

Article 20 § 1 of the Law on Legal Status of Foreign Nationals in the Russian Federation, no. 115-FZ of 25 July 2002 (“the Foreign Nationals Law”), requires a foreign national to register his or her residence within three days of his or her arrival in the Russian Federation. Article 21 § 3 of the Foreign Nationals Law requires foreign nationals to obtain residence registration at the address where they stay in the Russian Federation. Should their address change, such change is to be re-registered within three days.

Penalties for violations of residence regulations and the procedure for the determination of an administrative charge

Article 18.8 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation provides that a foreign national who violates the residence regulations of the Russian Federation, including by non-compliance with the established procedure for residence registration or procedure for choice of a place of residence, shall be punishable with an administrative fine of RUR 500 to 1000 and possible expulsion from the Russian Federation. Under Article 28.3 § 2 (15) a report on the offence described in Article 18.8 may be drawn up by officials of the State migration authorities. Article 28.8 requires such a report to be forwarded within one day to a judge or to an officer competent to examine administrative matters. Article 23.1 § 3 provides that the determination of any administrative charge that may result in expulsion from the Russian Federation shall be made by a judge of a court of general jurisdiction. Article 30.1 § 1 guarantees the right to appeal against a decision on administrative offence to a court or to a higher court.

Article 9 (7) of the Foreign Nationals Law provides that a residence permit may be annulled if a foreign national was charged two or more times within the last year with violations of residence regulations.

Expulsion from the Russian Federation

Article 32.10 § 1 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation provides that administrative expulsion of a foreign national from the Russian Federation may be carried out in the form of controlled independent exit of the person from the Russian Federation. Article 34 § 4 of the Foreign Nationals Law requires the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to notify the expulsion of a foreign national to his or her embassy or consular office.

COMPLAINTS

1.  The applicant complains under Article 2 of Protocol No. 4 to the Convention about a violation of his right to liberty of movement within the territory of the Russian Federation where he lawfully resided.

2.  The applicant complains under Article 5 of the Convention that on 11 December 2002 he was taken from his friend’s home and spent more than six hours in the police station.

3.  The applicant complains under Article 5 § 3 of the Convention that he was not brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorised by law to exercise judicial power.

4.  The applicant complains under Article 6 of the Convention that the administrative charge against him was determined by a police officer rather than a court as required by the domestic law.

5.  The applicant complains under Article 6 of the Convention that the judgment of the Nalchik Town Court of 26 February 2003 and the decisions of the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria were not fair in that they wrongly applied the domestic law.

6.  The applicant complains under Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 to the Convention that he was tried twice for the same offence, referring to the judgments of the Nalchik Town Court of 24 December 2002 and 26 February 2003.

7.  Finally, the applicant complains under Articles 5 and 8 of the Convention about his handcuffing and deportation by force on 7 August 2003. In respect of these events he also submits that there was no decision on his deportation and no review of his case because the proceedings concerning the annulment of his residence permit were still pending before the domestic courts. The applicant invokes in this respect Article 13 of the Convention.

THE LAW

A.  Objection of the Government as to the applicant’s victim status

The Government submit that the applicant is no longer a victim of the alleged violation because the decision of 11 December 2002 and the judgment of 26 February 2003 were quashed on 8 October 2003 and the applicant’s rights were “remedied”. Furthermore, by the judgment of 28 October 2003 the competent authorities were ordered to extend the applicant’s residence permit for five years.

The applicant disagrees. He submits that no response to his application for restoration of his residence permit has been received; he is now in Turkey and he has no legal possibility to return to Russia. In his view, the decisions of the domestic courts remain on paper, without any prospect of enforcement, and therefore he retains the victim status.

The Court recalls that a decision or measure favourable to the applicant is not in principle sufficient to deprive him of his status as a “victim” unless the national authorities have acknowledged, either expressly or in substance, and then afforded redress for, the breach of the Convention (see  
Amuur v. France
, judgment of 25 June 1996, Reports of Judgments and Decisions 1996-III, p. 846, § 36; Dalban v. Romania [GC], no. 28114/95, § 44, ECHR 1999-VI).

Turning to the facts of the present case, the Court notes that the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria expressly acknowledged, by the decision of 8 October 2003, that the administrative sanction had been unlawfully imposed on the applicant both from a substantive and procedural points of view. On 28 October 2003 the Nalchik Town Court quashed the decision on the annulment of the applicant’s residence permit and confirmed that the applicant could reside in Russia on lawful grounds. However, the Court is not persuaded that the applicant can be regarded as having been afforded adequate redress. On this point it observes that the domestic courts did not order payment of any compensation for pecuniary or non-pecuniary damage sustained by the applicant or – as a bare minimum – provided for his travel expenses in connection with his eventual return to Russia. Furthermore, the procedural lawfulness of the applicant’s forceful removal from Russia has never been examined by the domestic courts, notwithstanding the Government’s admission of a violation of Article 1 of Protocol No. 7 (see below). At present the applicant does not appear to be in possession of any document authorising his return or stay in Russia, his residence permit has not yet been extended and made available to him at his current place of residence. The Court notes that the Government did not suggest that it was for the applicant to take further steps to secure relief in this respect.

The Court therefore concludes that the applicant can still claim to be a “victim” within the meaning of Article 34 of the Convention. The Government’s objection is dismissed.

B.  Admissibility of the applicant’s complaints

1.  The applicant complains under Article 2 of Protocol No. 4 that the decision of 11 December 2002 whereby he was ordered to pay a fine for staying at his friend’s violated his rights under this provision. The relevant parts of Article 2 of Protocol No. 4 read as follows:

“1.  Everyone lawfully within the territory of a State shall, within that territory, have the right to liberty of movement and freedom to choose his residence.

...

3.  No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of these rights other than such as are in accordance with law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public safety, for the maintenance of ordre public, for the prevention of crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.

4.  The rights set forth in paragraph 1 may also be subject, in particular areas, to restrictions imposed in accordance with law and justified by the public interest in a democratic society.”

The Government, referring to the conclusions of an inquiry carried out by the Prosecutor General’s office of the Russian Federation, accept that there was a violation of the applicant’s rights under Article 2 § 1 of Protocol No. 4.

The applicant maintains that his right to liberty of movement was violated.

The Court considers, in the light of the parties’ submissions, that the complaint raises serious issues of fact and law under the Convention, the determination of which requires an examination of the merits. The Court concludes therefore that this complaint is not manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention. No other ground for declaring it inadmissible has been established.

2.  The applicant complains under Article 5 of the Convention that on 11 December 2002 he had to spend more than six hours at the police station and that his stay at the station was not authorised by a judge or other officer exercising judicial power. Article 5, in the relevant part, provides as follows:

“1.  Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be deprived of his liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure prescribed by law...

...

3.  Everyone arrested or detained in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 1 (c) of this Article shall be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorised by law to exercise judicial power ...”

The Court is not required to decide whether the applicant’s stay at the police station while the report was being drawn up amounted to  “deprivation of liberty” because, in any event, the applicant did not raise this issue before any competent domestic court.

It follows that this complaint must be rejected under Article 35 §§ 1 and 4 of the Convention for non-exhaustion of domestic remedies.

3.  The applicant complains under Article 6 of the Convention that the administrative sanction was imposed on him by a police authority rather than a court and that the domestic courts incorrectly applied the pertinent regulations. Article 6, in the relevant part, reads as follows:

“In the determination of his civil rights and obligations or of any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law...”

The Court is not required to decide whether Article 6 applies to the proceedings in question under its civil or criminal head because the judgments complained of were quashed on 8 October 2003 by the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria on the ground of infringement of substantive and procedural law. As it does not follow from the applicant’s submissions that he paid the fine, the effect of the proceedings which formed the basis for the applicant’s complaints has thus been annulled.

In these circumstances the Court finds that, insofar as the applicant’s complaints relate to the proceedings leading up to the Supreme Court decision, the applicant can no longer claim to be a victim of a violation of his rights under the Convention. It follows that this part of the application is manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention, and must be rejected pursuant to Article 35 § 4.

4.  The applicant complains under Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 that he was tried twice for the same offence in the proceedings leading up to the judgment of the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria of 19 March 2003. Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 provides as follows:

“1.  No one shall be liable to be tried or punished again in criminal proceedings under the jurisdiction of the same State for an offence for which he has already been finally acquitted or convicted in accordance with the law and penal procedure of that State.

2.  The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not prevent the reopening of the case in accordance with the law and penal procedure of the State concerned, if there is evidence of new or newly discovered facts, or if there has been a fundamental defect in the previous proceedings, which could affect the outcome of the case...”

The Court recalls that the aim of Article 4 of Protocol No. 7 is to prohibit the repetition of criminal proceedings that have been concluded by a final decision (see, most recently, Isaksen v. Norway (dec.), no. 13596/02, 2 October 2003). Assuming that the administrative proceedings in the instant case could be considered criminal in nature, the Court notes that the final decision in the ordinary proceedings was the judgment of the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria of 19 March 2003. There is no question of the applicant’s being tried or punished again for the same offence, apart from the decision of 8 October 2003, about which the applicant does not complain.

It follows that this complaint is manifestly ill-founded and must be rejected in accordance with Article 35 §§ 3 and 4 of the Convention.

5.  Finally, the applicant complains under Articles 5, 8 and 13 of the Convention about his handcuffing and forceful deportation from Russia, without respect for any procedural guarantees. Article 8 provides as follows:

“1.  Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.

2.  There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.”

Article 13 reads:

“Everyone whose rights and freedoms as set forth in [the] Convention are violated shall have an effective remedy before a national authority notwithstanding that the violation has been committed by persons acting in an official capacity.”

The Court recalls that in the case of expulsion of an alien Article 8, alone or in conjunction with Article 13, finds application where there is an arguable claim that such an expulsion may infringe the foreigner’s right to respect for family life (see Al-Nashif v. Bulgaria, no. 50963/99, § 133, 20 June 2002; Shebashov v. Latvia (dec.), no. 50065/99, 9 November 2000). However, in the present case it has not been argued that the applicant had a family in Russia. The Court has considered therefore that this complaint falls to be examined from the standpoint of the general procedural guarantees which Article 1 of Protocol No. 7, being the lex specialis for expulsion procedures (see Slivenko and Others v. Latvia (dec.), no. 48321/99, § 98, 23 January 2002), provides in all cases of expulsion of aliens. Article 1 of Protocol No. 7 reads as follows:

“1.  An alien lawfully resident in the territory of a State shall not be expelled therefrom except in pursuance of a decision reached in accordance with law and shall be allowed:

(a)  to submit reasons against his expulsion,

(b)  to have his case reviewed, and

(c)  to be represented for these purposes before the competent authority or a person or persons designated by that authority.

2.  An alien may be expelled before the exercise of his rights under paragraph 1 (a), (b) and (c) of this Article, when such expulsion is necessary in the interests of public order or is grounded on reasons of national security.”

The Court also finds that the applicant was only deprived of his liberty for a short time that was necessary to cover the distance between his home and the airport and the deprivation was a part of the deportation process. It considers therefore that the complaint under Article 5 is subsumed in the complaint under Article 1 of Protocol No. 7 and does not merit a separate examination.

The Government accept that there was a violation of Article 1 of Protocol No. 7 in that the applicant’s expulsion did not comply with procedural requirements and that it was not necessary. They indicate, however, that the applicant had effective remedies at his disposal because he challenged the order to annul his residence permit to a court and on 28 October 2003 the Nalchik Town Court held that the order had been unlawful. As regards the complaint under Article 8, the Government decline to make any comments because the criminal investigation into the lawfulness of the actions of the police officers is now pending.

The applicant takes note of the Government’s admissions. As regards the criminal investigation into the actions of the police officers, he points out that the investigation was re-opened and closed again on at least two occasions after 30 August 2003, the final decision to terminate the inquiry for the lack of indications of a criminal offence having been made on 11 December 2003. He maintains therefore that his rights under Article 8 were violated.

The Court considers, in the light of the parties’ submissions, that the complaint raises serious issues of fact and law under the Convention, the determination of which requires an examination of the merits. The Court concludes therefore that this complaint is not manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention. No other ground for declaring it inadmissible has been established.

For these reasons, the Court unanimously

Declares admissible, without prejudging the merits, the applicant’s complaints, under Article 2 § 1 of Protocol No. 4 and Article 1 of Protocol No. 7, about an alleged violation of his right to liberty of movement and his expulsion from Russia;

Declares inadmissible the remainder of the application.

Santiago Quesada Christos Rozakis 
 Deputy Registrar President

BOLAT v. RUSSIA DECISION


BOLAT v. RUSSIA DECISION