Gisayev v. Russia


Legal Relevance

Keywords: Refusal to Disclose Fate | State/Non-State Agents | Effective Remedy | Duty to Investigate | Duty to Prosecute | Reparations | Burden of Proof | Deprivation of Liberty | Evidence

Themes: Characteristics of the Crime

The Court was satisfied that the victim was abducted, held in unacknowledged detention and ill-treated by State agents. It made a finding of torture with respect to the victim, in light of the fact that he was kept in a permanent state of physical pain and anxiety owing to his uncertainty about his fate and to the level of violence to which he was subjected throughout his unacknowledged detention. The Court further held that the victim was held in unacknowledged detention in complete disregard of any safeguards, amounting to a particularly grave violation of his right to liberty and security.

Judgment Date

June 20, 2011

Country

Russia

Judicial Body

European Court of Human Rights

Articles violated

Article 3 [ECHR], Article 5 [ECHR], Article 13 [ECHR]

Articles not violated / not dealt with

Article 8 [ECHR], Article 14 [ECHR], Article 34 [ECHR]

Facts of the Case

Mr. Akhmed Khamzatovich Gisayev was abducted from his house in October 2003 by a group of armed men driving cars without registration numbers and wearing insignia of the “Armed Forces of Russia”. After an identity check, the men placed Mr. Gisayev in one of their vehicles, telling his family that information requests should be directed to the Federal Security Service. Mr. Gisayev was taken inside an unknown building, interrogated by servicemen, and subjected to threats and torture for days. On one occasion, one of the servicemen told the other officers that Mr. Gisayev's relatives were at the gate, and asked them to make the relatives leave. Shortly afterwards, Mr. Gisayev was blindfolded and driven away to the basement of another building, where he was again interrogated, threatened and beaten for days. On an unspecified date, several servicemen entered the basement, blindfolded Mr. Gisayev and told him that they were going to shoot him. They put him in the boot of a car and led him inside a building, where they left him for two days. In November 2003, the servicemen told Mr. Gisayev that he would be released and threatened him to leave Chechnya. They put him in a car and handed him over to a man who was a relative working with the law enforcement authorities. Following a number of unsuccessful complaints filed to official authorities, Mr. Gisayev's relatives had paid a ransom for his release after learning that he had been abducted and detained by Federal Security Service. In November 2003 an investigation was opened into Mr. Gisayev's abduction, and then suspended and reopened several times until 2007. On several occasions, Mr. Gisayev and his relatives were allegedly threatened not to complain about the abduction to the authorities.

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