Moldova repeatedly convicted by ECHR for unlawful detention: Applicant to receive over 5 thousand euros


The Republic of Moldova has been again convicted by the European Court of Human Rights for illegal detention of a person and restricting his access to the case materials. The Court decision, which was published today, May 15, ordered the state to pay the applicant damages of 5650 euros.

According to, the complaint was made by Iurie Pasa, a 34-year-old resident of Balti.

The man was detained for 24 hours in February 2011, on charges of trafficking in human beings. A few days ago, a 30-day arrest warrant was issued, indicating a wrong time.

The applicant appealed against the application of the warrant, arguing that the detention time had expired and that he should have been released because there was no warrant for a previous date. The applicant also complained that the prosecutor had failed to present evidence for pre-detention arrest.

The appeal was rejected by the Balti Court of Appeal and after a month, the pre-detention arrest was prolonged for another 30 days, but the judge mistakenly indicated that it expired the following day.

On an unknown date, the judge issued a new decision to correct the error, indicating another date of the expiry of the arrest. The applicant also filed another appeal, claiming that he did not have access to the materials of the criminal investigation.

This time the Balti Court of Appeal upheld the appeal and immediately released the man. The magistrates found that the error committed by the investigating judge as to the date of expiry of pre-detention arrest warrant was not corrected in accordance with the existing procedure and that an additional decision had to be adopted.

The man complained to the European Court that his detention on February 8, 2011, between 13:30 and 15:50, was illegal after the expiry of 72 hours and in the absence of a warrant, similarly to that of 6-16 March, 2011. The applicant also complained about court’s refusal to present him a copy of case materials and of the lack of an effective remedy.

Having examined the case, the ECHR found that although the national courts had recognized that the applicant’s detention was illegal, he was not compensated, so he retained his status of a victim.

The Court also found that the court that ordered the applicant’s arrest did not offer him access to the materials submitted by the prosecutor, and the Court of Appeal did not respond to the man’s complaint in that regard.

In his complaint, Iurie Pasa claimed 825 euros for pecuniary damage, 5,000 euros for non-pecuniary damage and 650 euros for legal costs and expenses. Except for pecuniary damage, the ECHR ruled that the Republic of Moldova should pay the applicant the damages claimed.