THE FACTS

Whereas the applicant states that he is an Irish citizen, born in 1940,
and at the time of his application was detained in prison in L.. He is
represented by Mr. B., a solicitor, practising in L.. The applicant was
granted legal aid by the Commission.

He states that on the night of .. June 1969, he was lying with a friend
on a grass patch, and under suspicion of attempting to commit a felony.
Two police cars arrived on the scene, and at least six policemen got
out, one with a dog. The applicant says that he got up to surrender
himself but the dog was released by the police officer, and attacked
and salvaged the applicant, causing extensive injuries to both his
upper arms, for which he required hospital treatment. The applicant
further alleges that, in the police car on the way to the station, he
was assaulted by a police officer, who punched him in the face, and
that later, in the police station, when his hands were handcuffed
behind his back, he was again assaulted by the police officer on two
separate occasions. The applicant was later charged with assaulting two
police officers; he maintains that those charges were completely false.

When the applicant first tried to write to the Commission he was
directed to write to the Chief Constable of S.. The applicant wrote to
the Chief Constable of S. Constabulary by letter dated .. June 1969 in
which he made complaints against a police dog handler and certain other
police officers. As a result of the advice given to the applicant by
the Deputy Chief Constable in a letter dated .. July 1969, the
applicant took no further action until after his trial at L. Assize in
October 1969. As a result of the applicant's letter dated .. October
1969 an enquiry was held by order of the Chief Constable of S..
Constabulary under the direction of Chief Superintendent S.. and the
result of the investigation was communicated to the applicant in a
letter dated .. May 1970 from the Chief Constable. This letter stated
that the applicant could take any action which he considered
appropriate. Copies of the statements forming part of the investigation
were not made available to the applicant nor were other particulars of
the investigation although they were submitted eventually to the
Director of Public Prosecutions. It should be noted that the enquiry
spread over a period of six months, the Chief Constable having
appointed on .. November a Chief Superintendent to carry out the
investigation and the report being eventually submitted to the Director
of Public Prosecutions on .. April. Despite the length of time which
it took the Chief Superintendent to prepare the report, the Director,
within three days of receiving it, expressed the view that there was
not sufficient evidence to justify the introduction of criminal
proceedings against any of the officers named.

In the meanwhile, a further and more serious charge had been made
against the applicant, namely that of attacking a police dog handler
with a knife and attempting to cause him grievous bodily harm. The
applicant says that this charge was equally false. It was brought two
weeks after his arrest an he submits that the police could not during
that period have overlooked the fact that he had assaulted them with
a knife.

At his trial the applicant pleaded guilty to a charge of burglary but
not guilty to three charges of assaulting a police officer. He was
acquitted on those three charges, but was sentenced to eighteen months'
imprisonment for burglary. He alleges that the judge, in passing
sentence, was influenced by the other charges since the applicant's
accomplice was merely put on probation for an extended period, although
already on probation at the time of the offense.

The applicant states that he wishes to maintain his claim for
compensation for injuries, unnecessary suffering and damage to
clothing. The injuries which he received left twelve scars on his arms,
and his clothing was ripped and bloodstained. He also suffered mental
strain while detained on remand, knowing that he could expect a very
long term of imprisonment if he was found guilty of the allegedly false
charges made against him.

The applicant submits that he was unaware of any remedies available to
him either in criminal or civil law and that he was unable to obtain
any further information from the prison authorities concerning any such
remedies as he had been informed by the prison censor at L. Prison,
shortly after his conviction in October 1969, that he had no right to
contact his solicitor as he had no legal rights while serving a term
of imprisonment. This officer informed the applicant of this position
when refusing to forward a letter from the applicant to his solicitor.
Changes in staff at L. Prison made a verification of this complaint
impossible.

The applicant states that he was aware of Rules 35 and 34 of the Prison
Rules 1964, insofar that he knew that his mail was restricted, but did
not know that he was required to apply to the Home Secretary for
permission to write to his solicitor his case had been determined by
the Court. The prison sensor did not inform the applicant of this
procedure or endeavour to explain Rules 33 and 34 to him.

The applicant invokes Articles 3, 5 (2) and (3) and Article 6 of the
Convention, without giving details of the exact provisions relied upon.

The respondent Government dispute the account of events as given by the
applicant with regard to his arrest on .. June and contend that the
police had been called to investigate a burglary at B. Road, S. and saw
the applicant and another man lying on the ground near the premises
concerned. The applicant at once jumped up, and was seen by the officer
to reach into his pocket and take out what appeared to be a large
knife. The applicant lunged towards the officer with the knife
whereupon the dog leapt at him, seizing him by the arm and causing him
to drop the knife. The police officer told the applicant and the other
man that they were being arrested for forcing an entry into the
premises concerned and the applicant kicked out at the police dog which
promptly seized his other arm. The applicant was throughout abusive and
violent and had to be handcuffed and, when brought to the police
station assaulted two officers and used obscene language. On the day
of his arrest, he was brought before the S.. City Magistrates and, on
.. July 1969 after a voluntary statement made by the person who had
been arrested with him, he was committed for trial and charged with
aggravated burglary and attempt to wound a police officer with intent
to cause grievous bodily harm.

The applicant applied several times to the Chief Constable for the
investigation of his complaints and this was ordered after the
applicant's trial and disclosed no evidence in support of his
allegations. The report of the investigation was transmitted to the
Director of Public Prosecutions and it was decided that no action
should be taken against the officers concerned.

As regards the applicant's complaint that the prison authorities
obstructed an attempt which he made about a week after his conviction
to contact his solicitors, with a view to bringing legal proceedings
against the police, the respondent Government submit that the prison
records have been inspected and, although a record of all letters sent
and received by inmates is kept, there is no record of any letter from
the applicant to his solicitors having been stopped. The practice is
that, if, for any reason, a letter by a prisoner is not posted, it is
retained in the prisoner's personal file. If the applicant had
attempted to write to solicitors without obtaining the permission of
the Home Secretary, his letter would have been stopped and he would
have been advised to petition for the necessary permission. Any such
petition would have been considered in accordance with the usual
practice. It has not been possible to trace the officer who may have
given the applicant advice on his right to seek legal advice; this may
be due to the fact that there have been changes of staff at the L.
Prison since the time when the applicant alleges that his letter was
written. If,  however, any advice had been given, the United Kingdom
Government would have expected the advice to be in the terms indicated
above.

PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE COMMISSION

Whereas the proceedings before the Commission can be summarised as
follows:

In accordance with Rule 45, 1, of the Commission's Rules of Procedure,
the application was examined on 21 July 1970 by a group of three
members of the Commission, who considered that the application should
be communicated to the respondent Government.

In accordance with Rule 45, 3 (b), the application was communicated by
the Commission on 23 July 1970 to the Government of the United Kingdom,
which was invited to submit, before 22 September 1970, its observations
in writing on the admissibility of the application. At the request of
the respondent Government, this time-limit was subsequently extended
to 8 October 1970. The Government submitted its written observations
on 1 October 1970 which were communicated to the applicant on 9 October
1970. A time-limit expiring on 2 November 1970 was fixed for the
submission of the applicant's written observations in reply. This
time-limit was subsequently extended to 20 January 1971 after the
confirmation by the Commission's Secretary of the appointment of Mr.
B. on 21 December 1970 as the applicant's legal representative. The
applicant's observations were submitted under cover of his lawyer's
letter dated 14 January 1971.

SUBMISSIONS OF THE PARTIES

Whereas the submissions of the parties may be summarised as follows:

I. LAW RELATING TO THE INVESTIGATION OF COMPLAINTS AGAINST THE POLICE
AND REMEDIES FOR ASSAULT. LAW AND PRACTICE CONCERNING PRISONERS'
COMMUNICATIONS IN CONNECTION WITH COURT PROCEEDINGS AND PRISON PRACTICE
RELATING THERETO

1. The respondent Government submit that the competence for the
investigation of complaints against the police is placed by the Police
Act 1964 on local police authorities. Under the same Act the overall
direction and control of a police force lies with the Chief Constable
who is appointed by the local police authority, subject to the approval
of the Home Secretary.

Under Section 49 of the Act, the Chief Constable is required to record
a complaint made by a member of the public and to cause it to be
investigated. Unless he is satisfied from the report of the
investigation that no criminal offence has been committed, he is
required to send the report to the Director of Public Prosecutions. It
is, however, common practice, even if the Chief Constable himself is
of the opinion that no criminal offence has been committed, to submit
the report to the Director in order that the decision whether or not
to take proceedings may be seen to have been taken impartially.

Further, the applicant could institute legal proceedings for damages
for tort (or civil wrong) within three days from the date when the
cause of action accrued. By virtue of Section 48 (1) of the Police Act
1964, the Chief Constable is in such cases treated for all purposes as
being jointly liable with the police officers concerned, and Section
48 (2) provides that any such damages or costs awarded shall be paid
out of the police fund thereby ensuring that a successful claim shall
be met.

The victim of an assault, in this case allegedly the applicant, could
also himself institute criminal proceedings against the persons who
commit the assault, either for common assault or for assault
occasioning actual bodily harm or for unlawful wounding.

A prisoner may take legal proceedings after obtaining leave of the
responsible authority. According to Prison Rules 1964 (Rule 37 (1)),
he is to be given all reasonable facilities to consult his lawyer and
may do so out of hearing, but within sight, of a prison officer. He may
also apply for legal aid.

The above is subject to restrictions. The respondent Government submit
that the Prison Rules 1964 made by the Secretary of State under Section
47 of the Prison Act 1952, place certain restrictions on communications
between prisoners and other persons. The relevant provisions are
contained in Rules 33 and 34, the text of which has been submitted to
the Commission. In particular, Rule 34 (8) provides that a prisoner may
not communicate with any person in connection with any legal or other
business, or with any person other than a relative or friend, except
with the leave of the Home Secretary.

A prisoner who wishes to take legal advice in connection with his
treatment in prison, as with any other matter, must therefore obtain
the permission of the Home Secretary before communicating with a
solicitor. In deciding whether or not to grant a request for leave to
seek legal advice, the Home Secretary takes into account the extent to
which the particulars contained in the request reveal a possible cause
of action and leave will not normally be granted if the particulars are
insufficient in indicate the precise nature of the prisoner's
complaint. If the particulars are not sufficient for this purpose, the
prisoner is normally invited to submit further particulars. In
considering whether a prisoner should be allowed to communicate with
a solicitor while still serving his sentence, the Home Secretary takes
into account whether any proceedings which the prisoner might wish to
take would, before his release from prison, become barred by statutory
limitation
on account of the passage of time since the alleged cause of action
arose. But in any event it is not the practice of the Home Secretary
to refuse leave to communicate with a solicitor for the purpose of
obtaining legal advice if the request indicates the nature of the
complaint in question and the complaint is of such a nature as, on a
reasonable and objective view of the facts, to reveal a cause of
action.

In considering a request to pursue legal action against the prison
authorities or against individual prison officers it is the
responsibility of the Home Secretary to satisfy himself as to the full
circumstances of the case and, where appropriate, to cause such
enquiries to be made as are necessary for this purpose. Where the
complaint involves accusations of misconduct by prison officers (e.g.
assault) it is the practice of the Home Secretary to insist that,
before he entertains a request for permission to consult a solicitor
with a view to bringing legal proceedings, the prescribed procedure for
dealing with such allegations of disciplinary offenses by the prison
officers concerned (or, in appropriate cases, as criminal offenses)
should first be exhausted.

2. The applicant submits, with regard to the investigation of
complaints made against members of the police force, that under the
existing system he was entirely dependent upon what in effect was an
internal police inquiry, although the eventual decision as to whether
or not proceedings should be instituted was taken by the Director of
Public Prosecutions. Nevertheless, the inquiry, the interviewing of
witnesses, the taking of statements, the interview of the applicant's
accomplice and other interviews were carried out in private by a
serving police officer in respect of complaints relating to other
serving police officers. It is submitted that an investigation under
Section 49 (1) of the Police Act 1964, is most unsatisfactory from the
point of view of the complaint, as it is not sufficient for there to
be an independent assessment of the evidence adduced at the end but the
preparation of such evidence and the enquiries necessitated by such an
investigation, the taking of proofs, the interviewing of witnesses
should be conducted in a more independent manner rather than by a
fellow officer of those against whom complaints are, in fact, being
made.
The applicant further submits, with regard to prisoners' communications
in connection with court proceedings that it is clearly not sufficient
to say that a convicted prisoner is "open to take any action which he
considers appropriate", as indicated in the respondent Government's
observations. Clearly, as will be adduced hereafter, steps open to a
convicted prisoner are completely different from those open to a person
able to seek legal advice unhampered by the restrictions hereafter
referred to. It is noted that the respondent Government concedes that
these restrictions may, in practice, have the effect of restricting the
prisoner's ability to institute legal proceedings. It is in respect of
these restrictions upon a prisoner to institute such legal proceedings
that the present application is, in fact, made. It is submitted that
such concession on the part of the respondent Government is sufficient
to permit the general admissibility of this complaint.

So far as the observations of the respondent Government are concerned,
the applicant is further disturbed to note that the Home Secretary is
not prepared to allow the matter to be considered in a dispassionate
way by the defendant's independent legal adviser, in each and every
case without hesitation. But, the Home Secretary, in the event of
receiving a request to pursue legal action against prison authorities
or individual prison officers (and to some extent the position of a
police officer must be allied to these two) and in order to satisfy
himself as to the full circumstances of the case, causes his own
inquiries to be made. Thus again, do we have an internal and far from
independent inquiry touching upon matters which one would hope would
be dealt with at a later stage by an independent judicial tribunal. It
could then be cleaned up and whitewashed prior to such independent
judicial inquiry.

II. CONSIDERATION OF ADMISSIBILITY

A. As to Article 3

1. The respondent Government submit that the applicant does not
particularise his complaint under Article 3 but it is assumed that it
relates to the alleged assault by police officers when he was arrested.

The applicant's allegations in this respect were investigated in
pursuance of Section 49 of the Police Act and no evidence in support
of these allegations was disclosed. However, this investigation does
not preclude civil or criminal proceedings instituted by he complainant
himself. It was open, and it is still open, to the applicant to pursue
one or more of the remedies described subject, of course, to prior
permission of the Home Secretary, as described above to communicate
with a solicitor.

The Government accordingly submit that the applicant has failed to
exhaust domestic remedies in this respect, as required by Article 26
of the Convention, and his complaints under Article 3 should be
considered as inadmissible under Articles 26 and 27 (3) of the
Convention.

2. The applicant submits that the respondent Government's observations
in this respect should be rejected having regard to the nature of the
inquiry under the Police Act. A fuller open inquiry before a jury at
L. Assize would have been preferable. The court had in fact accepted
the applicant's version and not the version submitted by the police
officers on oath with regard to the facts at the time of his arrest.

It is further submitted that the applicant's complaints under Article
3 relate to the assault by the police dog and its handler and to the
police officers concerned in the arrest. The officer in charge of the
dog failed to warn the applicant that the dog would attack if he moved
and made no effort to call the dog off when he was it salvaging the
applicant. The applicant further complains that the assault on him by
the police officers carrying out the arrest were a further breach of
Article 3.

It is finally submitted that the necessity to obtain the permission of
the Home Secretary to communicate with a solicitor and to set out the
grounds of complaint amount to a disclosure of a possible statement of
claim. This must be made prior to the receipt of legal advice and thus
makes difficult the pursuit of domestic remedy.

B. As to Article 5 (2) and (3)

1. The respondent Government submit that the applicant does not
indicate the respects in which he contends that this Article has been
violated.

With regard to Article 5 (2), reference is made to the facts of the
case as presented by the Government and it is submitted that, since the
reason given to the applicant for his arrest was true and the charges
against him were genuinely preferred and in absence of evidence to the
contrary, it is undisputed evidence that the provisions of the said
Article were fully complied with in the present case. And, further,
that the subsequent amendment of the charges against the applicant
(before he was finally committed for trial and as a result of further
evidence coming into the hands of the police) to include certain more
serious charges arising out of the same events was not in itself any
way improper and cannot be taken as casting any doubt on the property,
in terms of Article 5 (2) of the Convention of the conduct of the
police at the time of the arrest and the initial preferment of charges.

With regard to Article 5 (3), reference is again made to the
Government's observations on the facts and it is submitted that the
applicant was arrested under circumstances contemplated by Article 5
(1) (c) and was brought before the judge on the same day. He was
further tried within fifteen weeks and four days from the date of his
arrest and this period, is, in the Government's submission, reasonable.

The Government suggest that the applicant's complaints under Article
5 (2) and (3) are therefore inadmissible as being manifestly
ill-founded.

2. The applicant submits with regard to the alleged violation of
Article 5 (2) of the Convention, that he was informed of the charge of
burglary at the time of his arrest but he was not charged with the
further offenses in relation to the police officers until .. July 1969
although the incident giving rise to these further charges took place
on .. June 1969 and were of such a nature that the length of
investigation, prior to the charges being brought, should not have
taken fourteen days.

Further, the applicant's allegation of the breach of Article 5 (3)
relates to the delay in his being brought to trial by reason of the
police waiting for fourteen days before bringing the further charges
which resulted in a delay in the applicant being brought to trial. Had
he been charged with the further offenses upon his arrest, his case
would have been dealt with at the July Assizes. Due to delay, however,
he was retained in custody until his case came before the Assizes in
October. There can be no excuse for the delay in preferring the further
charges as no further inquiries were needed and no further witnesses
had to be brought.

C. As to Article 6 of the Convention

1. With regard to the applicant's general allegation of a violation of
Article 6, the respondent Government submit that, insofar as the
allegation relates to the trial itself, i.e. that the judge, in
determining his sentence was influenced by the charges of assault of
which he was in fact acquitted, such allegation is totally unsupported
by any evidence. They further point out that the applicant failed to
seek leave to appeal, or leave to appeal out of time, against his
sentence on grounds of it being excessive or having been determined by
reference to improper considerations.

The Government submit, in this context, that the applicant's complaint
relating to his trial, is inadmissible as being manifestly ill-founded
or for failure to exhaust domestic remedies.

Insofar as the applicant's complaints of being obstructed by the prison
authorities in the institution of proceedings against the police
officers concerned in his arrest, the respondent Government submit that
detention in prison, pursuant to a sentence passed on conviction of a
criminal offence (this being a deprivation of liberty permitted under
Article 5 of the Convention), necessarily involves a deprivation of
liberty going beyond the mere fact of confinement. There is inherent
in physical confinement a restriction on the ability of the person
confined to see to the conduct of his affairs. It is, therefore,
further submitted that the fact of confinement affects the application
of provisions of the Convention beyond those of Article 5, for example,
those relating to family life, correspondence, assembly and marriage,
and that this is a necessary consequence of the inherent
characteristics of confinement and is distinct from the express
qualifications on certain of the provisions of the Convention such as
those set out in Articles 8 (2), (9), 10 (2) and 11 (2). In support of
these submissions, the respondent Government refer to the final
decision of the Commission as to admissibility in the application of
de Courcy against the United Kingdom (No. 2749/66, Yearbook, Vol. X,
p. 388 at p. 412),  and to the decision of the Commission in relation
to Article 12 of the Convention (which does not contain any express
qualifying provision such as is to be found in Article 8 (2)) in
Application No. 892/60 (Yearbook, Vol. IV, p. 240 at p. 256).

The respondent Government further submit that the circumstances of a
regime of detention are such that certain restrictions on the free
access of prisoners to the machinery of civil litigation are both
necessary and justifiable; that, even as regards persons who are not
prisoners, it is generally accepted that there may be circumstances in
which it is legitimate to impose restrictions in appropriate cases on
their untrammelled recourse to the machinery of litigation; and that,
in the case of convicted persons there is a greater necessity for such
restrictions.

The respondent Government further submit that, as explained in the part
of their observations concerning the facts of the case, they have no
evidence that the applicant did in fact make any attempt to write to
his solicitors or that any letter signed by him for this purpose was
stopped by the prison authorities. It is also clear that the applicant
did not seek the permission of the Home Secretary to send any such
letter as he was required to do under the practice described above. If
he had done so, his request would have been considered and leave would
then have been granted or withheld in accordance with that practice.
Accordingly, the applicant's complaint in this respect should be
considered inadmissible as being manifestly ill-founded.

Without prejudice to the above, the Government also submit that it is
still open to the applicant to request the Home Secretary's permission
to consult his solicitor and until such a request has been made and
refused, the applicant cannot be considered to be the victim of a final
decision in violation of his rights under the Convention. Therefore
this complaint should be, in the alternative, inadmissible for
non-exhaustion of domestic remedies in accordance with Articles 26 and
27 (2) of the Convention.

2. The applicant alleges a breach of Article 6 in that the offence with
which he was originally charged would have been brought before the
Court in July 1969, but, as a result of the further charges being
brought fourteen days after his arrest, the applicant had to await
trial at the Assize held in October 1969.

The applicant wrote to his solicitors shortly after his conviction in
October 1969 raising the question of appeal against sentence, together
with a request for advice concerning any remedy he might have against
the police force. This letter was censored by the prison censor.
It is basically because of this measure that a breach of Article 6 is
complained of, in that, although domestic remedies might have been
available both for the bringing of proceedings and the submission of
an appeal, the refusal by the prison authorities to permit access to
his solicitor prevented the applicant from pursuing this remedy. The
applicant maintains that the respondent Government's observations are
inconsistent with Article 6 as, although clearly certain restrictions
upon liberty necessarily result from prison detention, it is
inconsistent with basic human rights that a prisoner should be
ill-treated in the manner described in Article 3 and should have
subsequently no proper recourse to law, particularly when he alleges
that it is the prison officials themselves who are so treating him.

It is further submitted that a proposed defendant should not be the
person to decide whether or not a complaint is frivolous or vexatious.
Had the applicant been permitted to seek legal advice and subsequently
bring proceedings, then an application for legal aid could be granted,
the Law Society would have made an independent assessment of the
question whether or not the application was frivolous or vexatious. It
is submitted that such a safety valve, as regards an appreciation of
the value of a detained person's claim, is preferable in that it is at
least independent.

The applicant finally notes that within recent months the respondent
Government has brought into operation regulations whereby an accused
person after conviction, can make specific representations upon
specific forms seeking advice from his solicitor upon the question of
an appeal. These forms have been brought into use since the present
case was heard and a copy of one such form has been submitted to the
Commission.


THE LAW

Whereas the applicant first complains of a violation of Article 3
(Art. 3) of the Convention which provides that "no-one shall be
subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or
punishment";

Whereas, although the applicant has not himself specified which part
of Article 3 (Art. 3) he invokes, the Commission has not considered
that his complaint could possibly raise any question as regards
"torture" or "inhuman or degrading punishment" but only as regards
"inhuman or degrading treatment"; whereas the applicant alleges that
at the moment of his arrest on .. June 1969 he was attacked and
salvaged by a police dog and that, in the police car on the way to the
police station and in the station itself, he was twice assaulted by
police officers while his hands were handcuffed behind his back;
whereas the respondent Government disputed the account of events as
given by the applicant and submitted that in actual fact the applicant
at the time of his arrest became violent and lunged towards the police
dog handler with a knife whereupon the dog leapt at him and gripped his
arm; that afterwards he kicked out at the police dog which promptly
seized his other arm; that, after his arrest, the applicant continued
to be abusive and violent and, when brought to the police station,
assaulted two police officers;

Whereas the applicant was committed for trial on .. July 1969 and
charged with aggravated burglary, with attempt to wound a police
officer with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and with assaulting
two other police officers; whereas, it is not disputed that at his
trial the applicant was convicted only on the charge of burglary and
was acquitted on the other charges; whereas the applicant's allegations
in regard to his being assaulted by the police were investigated in
pursuance of Section 49 of the Police Act 1964, and the Director of
Public Prosecutions decided that no evidence in support of these
allegations was disclosed and therefore refused to take action against
the police officers concerned;

Whereas, further, the respondent Government contended in this respect
that the applicant has not exhausted the domestic remedies available
to him in that he failed to institute criminal or civil proceedings
against those persons who had allegedly ill-treated him;

Whereas the Commission notes that the institution of such proceedings
require the prior permission of the Home Secretary but in fact, the
applicant did not petition the Home Secretary for such permission;

Whereas, however, the Commission has previously found in similar
circumstances that it is doubtful whether the institution of such
proceedings constitutes an effective remedy within the meaning of
Article 26 (Art. 26) of the Convention (see Application No. 3868/68,
in Collection of Decisions, Vol. 34, p. 10 (17));

Whereas, the Commission next had regard to the account of events as
given by the respondent Government and to the results of the
investigation carried out under the authority of the Chief Constable;

Whereas it considers that the account of events given by the Government
appears to be generally correct; whereas, the Commission in any case
finds that even the applicant's version of the various incidents does
not disclose a treatment so serious as to amount to inhuman or
degrading treatment within the meaning of Article 3 (Art. 3) of the
Convention (see Report of the Commission on First Greek Case, Vol. II,
I, p. 1); whereas, therefore, the Commission is in any event of the
opinion that the applicant's complaints as regards his alleged
ill-treatment are manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article
27, paragraph (2) (Art. 27-2), of the Convention;

Whereas, the applicant also complains of a violation of Article 5,
paragraph (2) (Art. 5-2) of the Convention which provides that
"everyone who is arrested shall be informed promptly, in a language
which he understands, of the reasons for his arrest and of any charge
against him";

Whereas, the applicant submits that he was informed of the charge of
burglary at the time of his arrest but it was not until .. July 1969
that he was charged with the further offenses in relation to the police
officers, although the incidents giving rise to these charges took
place on .. June 1969 and were of such nature that the length of their
investigation prior to the charges being brought should not have taken
fourteen days.

Whereas, the respondent Government submit that the applicant was
brought before the S. Magistrates' Court on .. and .. June and .. July
1969, and that there is no evidence to show that the reason given to
him for his arrest was untrue or that the charges against him were not
genuinely preferred; further, that the subsequent amendment of the
charges against the applicant, before his committal for trial, was a
result of subsequent evidence, in particular, of the statement made on
.. June 1969 by a person arrested together with him;

Whereas the Commission has frequently found that Article 5, paragraph
(2) (Art. 5-2) of the Convention does not require this information
about the charges to be given in any special form (see Applications
Nos. 1211/61, Yearbook, Vol. 5, p. 224; 1216/61, Collection of
Decisions, Vol. 2, p. 1; 2621/65 Yearbook, Vol. 9, p. 474 (480));

Whereas, the Commission is also satisfied that the reasons given to the
applicant for his arrest were true and indeed resulted in his
conviction on the charge of burglary and that, moreover, Article 5 (2)
(Art. 5-2) does not require that a complete description of all the
charges should be given to the accused at the moment of his arrest;

Whereas, therefore, the Commission finds that the examination of the
case does not disclose any appearance of a violation of Article 5 (2)
(Art. 5-2) of the Convention; whereas it follows that this part of the
application is also manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of
Article 27, paragraph (2) (Art. 27-2), of the Convention;

Whereas the applicant further alleges a violation of Article 5,
paragraph (3) (Art. 5-3) of the Convention, in that his being brought
to trial was unduly delayed as it was not until fourteen days after the
date of his arrest that the police brought further charges and he was
therefore tried at the Assizes in October instead of July 1969;

Whereas it is true that under Article 5, paragraph (3) (Art. 5-3) of
the Convention "everyone arrested or detained in accordance with
paragraph (1) (c) (Art. 5-1-c) of this Article, shall be brought
promptly before a judge or other officer authorised by law to exercise
judicial power and shall be entitled to trial within a reasonable time
or to release pending trial."

Whereas the applicant was arrested on .. June 1969 and remanded in
custody. He was brought before the Magistrates' Court on the morning
of his arrest, and appeared again before that Court on .. June and ..
July 1969; whereas it is therefore clear that the applicant was
"brought promptly" before the competent judge within the meaning of the
above provision;

Whereas the Commission is next called upon to decide whether or not the
applicant's detention on remand has been prolonged beyond a reasonable
time and was thereby contrary to the second requirement of Article 5,
paragraph (3) (Art. 5-3) of the Convention;

Whereas the Commission observes that the charges were clearly serious
that they involved an accomplice, and that the applicant's detention
on remand lasted for a period of fifteen weeks and four days only;

Whereas, consequently, an examination of the case does not disclose any
appearance of a violation of Article 5, paragraph (3) (Art. 5-3) of the
Convention;

Whereas it follows that similarly this part of the application is
manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 27, paragraph (2)
(Art. 27-2), of the Convention;

Whereas, in regard to the applicant's further complaint a violation of
Article 6 (1) (Art. 6-1) in that he allegedly did not have "a fair and
public hearing within a reasonable time", the proceedings from the time
of his arrest until his conviction lasted, as did his detention on
remand, for a total period of fifteen weeks and four days;

Whereas this period can equally in no way be considered as a violation
of this right mentioned in Article 6 (1) (Art. 6-1); whereas it follows
that this part of the application is also manifestly ill-founded within
the meaning of Article 27, paragraph (2) (Art. 27-2), of the
Convention;

Whereas, finally the applicant further complains under Article 6 (1)
(Art. 6-1) that by the refusal of the prison authorities to allow him
to consult a solicitor he was prevented from obtaining the
determination of a civil right by a tribunal in that he was unable to
pursue his claim against the police officers before a court;
whereas it is true that such a refusal might give rise to the question
whether the applicant's right to access to a court, insofar as it can
be considered as being guaranteed under the said provision (see
Application No. 4115/69, Knechtl v. United Kingdom), had been
interfered with; whereas, however, the applicant has failed to
substantiate his allegation that he has written to his solicitor or,
if so, that any such letter was stopped by the prison authorities;

Whereas an examination of the case does not disclose any appearance of
a violation of this particular right under Article 6 (1) (Art. 6-1);

Whereas it follows that this part of the application is also manifestly
ill-founded within the meaning of Article 27, paragraph (2)
(Art. 27-2), of the Convention;

Now therefore the Commission DECLARES THIS APPLICATION INADMISSIBLE