AS TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF

                      Application No. 28576/95
                      by Virginia Clare MATTHEWS
                      against the United Kingdom

     The European Commission of Human Rights (First Chamber) sitting
in private on 16 October 1996, the following members being present:

           Mrs.  J. LIDDY, President
           MM.   M.P. PELLONPÄÄ
                 E. BUSUTTIL
                 A. WEITZEL
                 B. MARXER
                 G.B. REFFI
                 B. CONFORTI
                 N. BRATZA
                 G. RESS
                 A. PERENIC
                 C. BÎRSAN
                 K. HERNDL
                 M. VILA AMIGÓ

           Mrs.  M.F. BUQUICCHIO, Secretary to the Chamber

     Having regard to Article 25 of the Convention for the Protection
of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms;

     Having regard to the application introduced on 14 July 1994 by
Virginia Clare MATTHEWS against the United Kingdom and registered on
18 September 1995 under file No. 28576/95;

     Having regard to the report provided for in Rule 47 of the Rules
of Procedure of the Commission;

     Having deliberated;

     Decides as follows:

THE FACTS

     The applicant is a British citizen born in 1952 and resident in
Hampshire in the United Kingdom.  She is represented before the
Commission by John Wadham of Liberty.  The facts as submitted by the
applicant can be summarised as follows.

     The applicant is a peace campaigner.  In the mid 1980s she was
arrested by soldiers and police and detained overnight in a pit on a
military range whilst campaigning against the siting of Cruise nuclear
missiles in the United Kingdom.  She successfully pursued proceedings
against the Chief Constable of Hampshire and the Ministry of Defence
("MOD") for which in March 1993 she was awarded £10, 000 compensation
by Portsmouth County Court.

     Whilst her case was being prepared, during the hearing and in the
week following the trial, the applicant experienced a number of
disconnections of her telephone each time she discussed the case.
Conversations were brought to a close by a muffled noise followed by
a click.  Other communications were interrupted by fuzzy noises and
click.  The applicant remarked that when she made phone calls from her
home she, and the individual receiving the call, heard a loud rushing
noise lasting about 30 seconds.  During this period the applicant had
a number of telephone conversations with her lawyers regarding her case
against the Chief Constable and the MOD.

     On 24 March 1993, during the trial, a local reporter telephoned
the applicant for information about her case.  She was out at the time
but he states that he heard a click as if an answerphone had gone off
(even though the applicant did not have an answerphone) followed by one
side of a conversation the applicant had had the previous day.

     On 24 November 1993 the applicant applied to the Interception of
Communications Tribunal.  She complained that there were no reasonable
grounds as prescribed by section 2(2) of the Interception of
Communications Act 1985 ("the 1985 Act") to justify such interception,
and that the interceptions were being carried out in the absence of a
warrant as required by section 1(2) of the 1985 Act.

     On 17 December 1993 the Tribunal Officer acknowledged the
applicant's application and by letter of 27 January 1994 informed her
that the Tribunal's investigation into the matter had "satisfied them
that there had been no contravention of ss. 2-5 of the Interception of
Communications Act 1985 in relation to the relevant warrant or relevant
certificate".

Relevant domestic law and practice

     On 10 April 1986 the Interception of Communications Act 1985
("the 1985 Act") came into force in the United Kingdom pursuant to the
judgment of the Court in the Malone case (Eur. Court H.R., Malone
judgment of 2 August 1984, Series A no. 82). Its objective, as outlined
in the Home Office White Paper dated February 1985, is to provide a
clear statutory framework within which the interception of
communications on public systems will be authorised and controlled in
a manner commanding public confidence.

(a)  Warrants.

     Section 1 of the 1985 Act makes it a criminal offence for anyone
to intentionally intercept a communication in the course of its
transmission by means of a public telecommunications system except in
four statutorily defined situations including when that interception
is in obedience to a warrant issued in accordance with sections 2-6 of
the 1985 Act. The prosecution of this offence is a matter for the
police. However, if the Commissioner (see below) comes across a case
of unauthorised interception it is accepted practice that he reports
the matter to the Prime Minister.

     Section 2 (1) confers on the Secretary of State the power to
issue warrants requiring the interception of communications and the
disclosure of intercepted material in such a manner and to such persons
as are described in the warrant. Section 2 (2) of the 1985 Act provides
that the Secretary of State shall not issue a warrant under this
section unless he considers that a warrant is necessary (i) in the
interests of national security; (ii) for the purpose of preventing or
detecting serious crime; or (iii) for the purpose of safeguarding the
economic well-being of the United Kingdom.

     Section 3 of the 1985 Act contains a detailed series of
provisions restricting the scope of any warrant issued. Section 4 deals
with the manner in which a warrant may be issued and with the duration
of the warrant. Section 5 deals, inter alia, with the modification of
any such warrant. Under Section 6 the dissemination and retention of
information obtained by interception under warrant is limited and
controlled.

(b)  The Tribunal.

     Any person can complain to the Interceptions of Communications
Tribunal ("the Tribunal") in respect of a suspected interception. The
Tribunal consists of five members each of whom must be a lawyer of not
less than 10 years standing and can hold office for five years subject
to re-appointment. Section 7 of and Schedule 1 to the 1985 Act contains
detailed provisions for the investigation of complaints by the
Tribunal. If the application does not appear to the Tribunal to be
frivolous the Tribunal will investigate whether there is or has been
a relevant warrant and, if so, will apply the principles of judicial
review in determining whether there has been a breach of sections 2-5
of the 1985 Act.

     If there has been no such breach the Tribunal will merely confirm
this but does not confirm whether a warrant has been issued or not.
However if there has been a breach, the Tribunal must notify the
applicant of its conclusion on this point, report on its findings to
the Prime Minister and to the Commissioner and, if the Tribunal thinks
fit, it can order the quashing of the warrant, destruction of the
intercepted material and payment by the Secretary of State of
compensation. The Tribunal does not give reasons for its decisions and
there is no appeal from a decision of the Tribunal.

(c)  Exclusion of review by court.

     Section 7(8) of the 1985 Act provides:

     "The decisions of the Tribunal (including any decision as to
     their jurisdiction) shall not be subject to appeal or liable to
     be questioned in any court."

(d)  Exclusion of evidence of interception in proceedings before any
     court of tribunal.

     Section 9 of the 1985 Act provides that no evidence shall be
adduced by any party, in any proceedings before a court or tribunal,
which tends to suggest that an unlawful interception has been committed
by, inter alia, a person holding office under the Crown. There are some
clearly defined exceptions to this rule, none of which is relevant to
the present application.  Section 9 provides as follows:

     "(1)  In any proceedings before any court or tribunal no evidence
           shall be adduced and no question in cross-examination shall
           be asked which (in either case) tends to suggest that:-

           (a)   that an offence under section 1 above had been or is
                 to be committed by any of the persons mentioned in
                 subsection 2 below; or

           (b)   that a warrant has been or is to be issued to
                 any of those persons.

     (2)   The persons referred to in subsection (1) above are :-

           (a)   any person holding office under the Crown;

           (b)   the Post Office and any person engaged in the business
                 of the Post Office; and

           (c)   any public telecommunications operator and any person
                 engaged in the running of a public telecommunication
                 system"

(e)  The Commissioner.

     The Commissioner is appointed by the Prime Minister and must have
held or hold a high judicial office. The Commissioner's role is mainly
a supervisory one. His functions include the following:

     (i) to keep under review the carrying out by the Secretary of
           State of the functions conferred on him by sections 2-5 of
           the 1985 Act;

     (ii) to keep under review the adequacy of the arrangements under
     section 6 of the 1985 Act;

     (iii) to assist the Tribunal;

     (iv) to report to the Prime Minister if the Commissioner is of
     the opinion that there has been a breach of sections 2-5 of the
     1985 Act which has not been so reported by the Tribunal or if the
     arrangements under section 6 of the 1985 Act are inadequate;

     (v) to make an annual report to the Prime Minister on the
     exercise of his functions, which report must be laid before
     Parliament. The Prime Minister has the power to exclude any
     matter from the report if publication would be prejudicial to
     national security, to the prevention or detection of serious
     crime or to the well-being of the United Kingdom. The report must
     state if any matter has been excluded.

(f)  The Commissioner's Reports (1986-1993).

     In general the reports of the Commissioner to the Prime Minister
have indicated an increase in new warrants issued, but the Commissioner
has been satisfied that in all cases those new warrants were justified
under section 2 of the 1985 Act.

     1986 Report

     Since this was the first report of the Commissioner (then
Lord Justice Lloyd, a member of the Court of Appeal) it was largely
concerned with explaining how the 1985 Act operated in practice. In
this regard the Commissioner pointed out the following:

     "<the Commissioner> cannot in the nature of things know, nor
     could he well find out, whether there has been an unlawful
     interception in breach of section 1. That is a job for the
     police. By unlawful interception I mean interception without a
     warrant and without any of the other defences provided by section
     1" (para. 3).

     1990 Report

     The Commissioner noted as follows:

     "My task is to ensure that those who issue warrants do not
     overstep the mark ... Where possible I see all new warrants
     issued since my previous visit. Where the number of new warrants
     is too great for this, I select cases at random. ... I am shown
     everything I ask to see. Although I cannot claim to have seen
     every warrant, I am satisfied that this system works. ... I have
     no reason to suppose that any warrants have, as it were, slipped
     through the net. I am confident that this has not been the case"
     (para. 8).

     The Commissioner also referred to the common assumption that
members of the public seem to make that their telephones are being
intercepted because they hear a "mysterious clicking noise". He
confirmed that the device used for interception of calls is inaudible
to the subscriber either on connection or in operation. He went on to
describe the device used (by those responsible for running a public
telecommunications system) for metering. A warrant under the 1985 Act
is not required for a metering device as it is used to record the
duration and destination of calls in order to verify a subscriber
account and does not involve listening to the telephone conversation.

     In relation to the standard form notice issued by the Tribunal
to a complainant confirming that there has been no breach of sections
2-5 of the 1985 Act (used whether a warrant has been issued or not),
the Commissioner noted the following:

     "If he complains to the police he is told that they cannot take
     action unless the interception was unauthorised. Since the
     subscriber does not know and cannot find out from the tribunal
     whether there has been any interception he is said to be without
     any effective remedy. There is some force in this argument. ...
     If any subscriber could find out whether his telephone was being
     intercepted or not, then the secrecy which is essential to the
     successful operation of the system would be gone" (para. 19).

     1991 Report

     Since the Commissioner was coming to the end of his second term
his report included a review of the previous six years' operation of
the 1985 Act (1985-1991 inclusive). He commented as follows:

     "7.   ......As part of my duties I make regular visits to HM
     Customs, the police and the security and intelligence agencies
     in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. From the start I have
     been impressed by the determination of the agencies not only to
     obey the letter of the law but also the spirit... I am satisfied
     that the system is working as intended by Parliament, and is
     working well.

     8.    What I have said about the agencies applies equally to
     those operating the postal and public telecommunications
     services.  Unless they have a warrant in their hands, or are
     satisfied that it has been signed, they do not carry out the
     interception.  This is one of the main safeguards built into the
     Act"

     In response to allegations made in the Guardian newspaper
implying that there were many unauthorised interceptions, the
Commissioner stated that there was no basis whatever for this
speculation.

     In response to similar allegations made in a television
documentary programme, he noted as follows:

     "There is not the slightest truth in the suggestion, repeated in
     the Guardian on the 16 July, that the law is being 'bent' by
     GCHQ, and that British businessmen are being 'ambushed' as a
     matter of routine" (para. 13).

     1992 Report

     In this report the Commissioner (Sir Thomas Bingham, now the Lord
Chief Justice) outlined four safeguards against "abuse" contained in
the 1985 Act (cf paras. 5-8 of the 1992 Report). He described the first
safeguard as follows:

     "It is the professional vigilance, competence and integrity of
     those who initiate and prepare warrant applications for
     consideration by Secretaries of State. In the first instance
     applications for warrants are initiated by police forces ..., HM
     Customs and Excise and the intelligence agencies. Such
     applications are channelled, as appropriate, through the Home
     Office, the Foreign and Commonwealth office, the Scottish office
     or the Northern Ireland office. Since 1 April 1992 applications
     for warrants relating to serious crime from police forces in
     England and Wales have been submitted through the National
     Criminal Intelligence Service. Previously the Metropolitan police
     had fulfilled this role. Before any application reaches the
     Secretary of State it is considered at various levels both within
     the initiating body and within the presenting department. ...
     Such a process would of course afford little protection if the
     officials responsible for handling these cases, in the initiating
     bodies or the presenting departments, were unmindful of the
     statutory criteria or careless whether they were satisfied or
     not. In the course of my investigations ... I have paid attention
     to this important aspect. I have been greatly impressed by the
     detailed understanding and scrupulous observance of the statutory
     criteria by the officials who handle these applications."

     The Commissioner noted that the second major safeguard against
abuse is the requirement of the Secretary of State to personally sign
or authorise every warrant. In this way "there may be no official
interception save on the personal authority of the Secretary of State."

     The Commissioner noted that he himself is the third safeguard as
he checks, through visits, discussions, investigations and inspections,
that warrants have not been issued in contravention of the 1985 Act and
that the appropriate procedures have been followed. He pointed out that
he saw no case in which the statutory restrictions were deliberately
evaded or corners knowingly cut. The Tribunal was noted as being the
fourth safeguard and the Commissioner added that in no case which was
investigated by the Tribunal did it find that any contravention of the
1985 Act had occurred.

     1993 Report

     The Commissioner indicated that his "clear impression is that at
every level up to and including Secretaries of State every effort is
made to scrupulously comply with the Act".

COMPLAINTS

1.   The applicant complains that there has been an interference with
her right to respect for her private life and her right to freedom of
expression, as guaranteed by Articles 8 and 10 of the Convention
respectively, arising out of the interception of telephone calls made
from her private home at a time when she was engaged in litigation
against the police and the Ministry of Defence.  She claims that the
interference was not lawful within domestic law or that the domestic
law is not sufficiently precise, that the interception did not pursue
a legitimate aim in that it appears to have been to gather information
to be used in the legal proceedings that she was pursuing and that the
interference was not necessary in a democratic society since it did not
include the procedural safeguards necessary to prevent abuse.

2.   The applicant further complains under Article 6 of the Convention
that she has been unable to have the question of the justifiability of
the disclosure of her confidential conversation determined in
proceedings which comply with Article 6.  The applicant claims that in
the light of recent developments in the law of confidentiality in the
United Kingdom, she now has, at the very least on arguable grounds, a
right recognised by English law to have the confidentiality of her
telephone conversations respected and that the authorities have a
corresponding duty not to intercept her telephone conversations except
for the purposes for which the power of interception is conferred.  The
applicant claims that a fortiori, she has an arguable claim for relief
against unauthorised interceptions by the police.  Consequently she
claims that the denial of access to a court for the purposes of
determining the issue and the effects of sections 7(8) and 9 of the
1985 Act in particular, constitute a violation of Article 6 of the
Convention.

3.   The applicant further complains under Article 13 that she has no
effective remedy in respect of her complaints.

THE LAW

1.   The applicant complains under Articles 8 and 10 (Art. 8, 10) that
the interception of telephone calls made to and from her home at a time
when she was pursuing proceedings for compensation against the Chief
Constable of Hampshire Police and the Ministry of Defence contravened
her right to respect for her private life and freedom of expression as
guaranteed by Articles 8 and 10 (Art. 8, 10) of the Convention.

     The Commission recalls that where interference is alleged in the
communication of information by correspondence Article 8 (Art. 8) is
the lex specialis and no separate issue arises under Article 10
(Art. 10) of the Convention (cf. Eur. Court HR, Silver and others v.
United Kingdom, judgment of 25 March 1983, Series A no. 61, p. 9,
paras. 106-107; No. 13590/88, Dec. 8.11.1989, D.R. 63 pp. 174-180).
The Commission considers that the same principle applies in respect of
the communication of information by telephone and will therefore
examine the applicant's complaints under Article 8 (Art. 8) of the
Convention, which 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."

     The Commission recalls that Article 8 (Art. 8) of the Convention
provides that there shall be no interference with the rights guaranteed
therein unless the interference is "in accordance with the law",
pursues one or more of the legitimate aims referred to in paragraph 2
of Article 8 (Art. 8) and is "necessary in a democratic society" (see,
for example, Eur. Court HR, Huvig v.  France judgment of 24 April 1990,
Series A no. 176-B, p. 52, para. 25).

     As to whether there has been an interference, the Commission
recalls that in this case the applicant complained to the Interception
of Communications Tribunal ("the Tribunal") that conversations on her
home telephone had been intercepted and that, by a letter of 27 January
1994, she was informed that the Tribunal had investigated her complaint
and was satisfied that there had been no contravention of ss. 2-5 of
the 1985 Act.  The response of the Tribunal meant either (i) that the
interceptions were lawful, having been carried out pursuant to a
warrant issued under s. 2 of the 1985 Act in the interests of either
(a) national security or (b) preventing or detecting serious crime,
(ii) that the interceptions were unlawful, no warrant having been
issued, (in which case the Tribunal would not have had jurisdiction to
investigate whether interception had taken place, that being a matter
for the police) or (iii) that no interceptions had taken place.

     The Commission notes that the applicant has no concrete proof to
support her allegation that her telephone communications were
intercepted.  The Commission recalls however that " an individual may,
under certain conditions, claim to be a victim of a violation
occasioned by the mere existence of secret measures without having to
allege that such measures were in fact applied to him" (Eur. Court HR,
Klass v. Germany judgment of 6 September 1978, Series A no. 28, p. 18
para. 34; No. 18601/91, Dec. 2.4.1993 (unpublished)).

     Similarly, in the Malone case, the Court agreed with the
Commission that the existence of laws and practices permitting and
establishing a system for effecting secret surveillance amounted in
itself to an interference with the applicant's rights under Article 8
(Art. 8) of the Convention, apart from any measures actually taken
against him (Eur. Court HR, Malone v. United Kingdom judgment of 2
August 1984, Series A no. 82, p. 31, para. 64).

     The Commission has held that this case-law cannot be interpreted
so broadly as to encompass every person in the United Kingdom who fears
that the Security Service may have compiled information about him.
However, an applicant cannot reasonably be expected to prove that
information concerning his private life has been compiled and retained.
It is sufficient, in the area of secret measures, that the existence
of practices permitting secret surveillance be established and that
there is a reasonable  likelihood that the Security Service has
compiled and retained information concerning his private life (see.
e.g. Nos. 18601/91, Dec. 4.4.1993, 20271/92, Dec. 1.9.1993, 20317/92,
Dec 1.9.1993 (unpublished) with further references).  The Commission
considers that the same approach must be adopted as to the level of
proof required of an applicant who  alleges that his/her telephone
communications have been intercepted by the police authorities.

     The Commission notes that the applicant has claimed that she and
those she spoke to on her phone during the relevant period heard a loud
rushing noise on the line lasting about thirty seconds.  She claims
that when a local reporter phoned her during the trial he heard a click
as if an answer phone had started followed by one side of a
conversation that the applicant had heard the previous day.  The
Commission recalls the 1990 Report of the Commissioner (see relevant
domestic law and practice above) where he stated that members of the
public seem to make the common assumption that their telephones are
being intercepted because they hear a "mysterious clicking noise"
although the device used for interception of calls is inaudible to the
subscriber either on connection or in operation.  However, in view of
the fact that the applicant was active in the campaign against Cruise
(nuclear) missiles in the United Kingdom, the Commission will assume
for the purposes of this decision that the applicant has established
a reasonable possibility that her telephone conversations were
intercepted pursuant to a warrant for the purposes of national
security.

a. Interception pursuant to a warrant.

     Insofar as an interference with the applicant's telephone
communications pursuant to a warrant has been assumed, such
interference must be justified under the second paragraph of Article 8
para. 1 (Art. 8-1). This requires an interference to be "in accordance
with law", to pursue a legitimate aim and to be "necessary in a
democratic society" for one or more of the reasons specified. As
regards the notion of "necessity", the case-law of the Convention
organs emphasises that while Contracting States may need to collect
information regarding national security there must exist adequate and
effective guarantees against abuse (eg. Eur.Court H.R., Klass v.
Germany, loc. cit., p. 23, para. 50).

     The Commission recalls its findings in Christie v. United Kingdom
(No. 21482/93, Dec. 27.6.94, D.R. 78-A p. 119) that insofar as any
interception was carried out pursuant to a warrant issued in accordance
with s. 2(2)(a) of the 1985 Act (that is in the interests of national
security), the 1985 Act, if properly applied, provides a framework of
safeguards against any arbitrary or unreasonable use of statutory
powers in respect of an individual and satisfies the threshold
requirements of Article 8 para. 2 (Art. 8-2). In the absence of any
evidence or indication that the actual practice followed is otherwise
than provided by the relevant legislation, the Commission must assume
that the relevant authorities are properly applying the legislation in
issue (Eur. Court HR, Klass v. Germany loc. cit. para. 59). No such
evidence or indication has been provided by the applicant. It follows
that the Commission sees no requirement in this case to depart from its
findings in Christie and considers that any interception that might
have taken place in this case for the purposes of national security can
be regarded as in accordance with law and necessary in a democratic
society in the pursuit of a legitimate aim.

b. Unlawful interception (interception without a warrant).

     Insofar as the applicant claims that the interception may have
been carried out without a warrant, the Commission recalls that such
interception would constitute a criminal offence under s. 1 of the 1985
Act.  Further safeguards include the fact that were the Tribunal or the
Commissioner to come across an instance of unauthorised interception
they would be expected to report it, that one of the functions of the
Commissioner, a member of the senior judiciary, is to review the system
and, as the Commissioner stated in his 1991 report, that those
operating the postal and public telecommunications services do not
carry out the interception unless they have a warrant in their hands,
or are satisfied that one has been signed.

     While the Commission is aware that responsibility for
investigating such offences lies with the police and not with the
Tribunal, which can only consider interception carried out pursuant to
a warrant, and that in this case the applicant is alleging that the
police may have carried or caused the interception to be carried out,
it does not consider that the applicant has shown evidence of any
malafides on the part of the police, the mere fact that she was
pursuing legal proceedings against the Chief Constable being
insufficient.  Further, the Commission observes that the applicant does
not appear to have complained to the Police Complaints Authority or to
the Director of Public Prosecutions in respect of the alleged
unauthorised interception.  In these circumstances the Commission does
not consider that the applicant has shown sufficient likelihood of
unlawful interception to establish an interference within the meaning
of Article 8 (Art. 8) of the Convention.

     It follows that this part of the complaint must be dismissed as
manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 27 para. 2
(Art. 27-2) of the Convention.

2.   The applicant further complains that she has been unable to have
the justifiability of the interception of her telephone communications
determined in proceedings that provide the guarantees laid down in
Article 6 (Art. 6) of the Convention.  That provision, so far as
relevant, provides as follows.

     "1.   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 Commission recalls that everyone has the right to have any
claim relating to his civil rights or obligations brought before a
court or tribunal (Eur. Court HR, Golder v. United Kingdom judgment of
21 February 1975, Series A no. 18, p 18, para. 36).  However, in
interpreting the concept of civil rights and obligations, the
Convention organs cannot create substantive rights which have no basis
in the domestic law of the State concerned (No. 14324/88, Dec. 19.4.91,
D.R. 69, p. 227 with further references).

     The applicant seeks to argue that the creation of a criminal
offence in respect of the unauthorised interception of a communication
in the course of its transmission by post or by means of a public
telecommunication system under s.1 of the 1985 Act, has created a
corresponding right not to have one's communications intercepted which
amounts to a civil right to have the confidentiality of one's telephone
conversations respected.  The Commission does not accept that the
creation of a criminal obligation leads to the automatic conferral of
a corresponding civil right within the meaning of Article 6 (Art. 6).

     Insofar as the applicant refers to English case law which she
claims establishes that such a right has now been recognised in English
law, the Commission notes that that case law concerns the equitable
duty of confidence that arises where information or documents are
compulsorily obtained.  The owner of the documents or information
compulsorily obtained is entitled to restrain their use for purposes
other than those for which the powers to obtain them were conferred.
The right or "equitable duty of confidence" arises from the
relationship between the parties and the circumstances of the
communication.  Thus, applying those principles, had the authorites
intercepted the applicant's communications, they would have had a duty
of confidentiality in respect of the contents of any such
communications and the applicant would have had an actionable claim had
the authorities breached that duty of confidence.

     In the view of the Commission, the case law relied on by the
applicant does not establish a general right of confidentiality in
domestic law or support the applicant's contention that she has a
specific right in domestic law not to have her telephone conversations
intercepted which would a amount to a civil right within the meaning
of Article 6 para. 1 (Art. 6-1) of the Convention.

     It follows that Article 6 para. 1 (Art. 6-1) is inapplicable to
the circumstances of the case and that this part of the complaint must
be dismissed as incompatible ratione materiae within the meaning of
Article 27 para. 2 (Art. 27-2) of the Convention.

3.   Finally the applicant complains that she has been deprived of her
right to an effective remedy in respect of her complaints as required
by Article 13 (Art. 13) of the Convention.  Article 13 (Art. 13)
provides as follows.

     "Everyone whose rights and freedoms as set forth in this
     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 Commission recalls that Article 13 (Art. 13) of the
Convention requires a remedy in domestic law only in respect of
grievances which can be regarded as "arguable" in terms of the
Convention (Eur. Court H.R., Powell and Rayner v. United Kingdom,
judgment of 21 February 1990, Series A no. 172, p.14, para. 31).  The
Commission finds that the applicant cannot be said, in the light of its
findings above, to have an "arguable" claim that her rights guaranteed
by the Convention have been violated.  It follows that this complaint
must also be dismissed as manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of
Article 27 para. 2 (Art. 27-2) of the Convention.

     For these reasons, the Commission, unanimously,

     DECLARES THE APPLICATION INADMISSIBLE.


  M.F. BUQUICCHIO                                 J. LIDDY
     Secretary                                    President
to the First Chamber                         of the First Chamber