Brno, Sept 5 (CTK) – The Czech judiciary made a mistake when it remanded in custody a Russian man based on a Russian arrest warrant, although the man was already granted asylum in Austria, the Constitutional Court (US) decided on Tuesday, upholding the man’s complaint.
As the foreigner has been granted asylum in another country of the European Union, he cannot be extradited for prosecution in Russia, the US said.
The man was already released from custody some time ago, and the US verdict therefore may primarily be a basis for a possible claim for financial compensation and a guideline for similar cases.
The man was granted asylum in Austria in 2004. Five years later, he was sentenced in Chechnya for a crime related to dealing with poisonous substances. Austria decided that the man would not be extradited because his fundamental rights might be violated in Russia.
In January 2017, Czech immigration police officers operating close to the border with Austria checked the man’s identity. When they revealed, that an international arrest warrant was issued on his name, they detained him. A Czech regional court then decided that the man would stay in custody in connection with the possible extradition. Two months later, the court changed its mind, declaring that the extradition is unacceptable because of the international protection that the man received from Austria.
Constitutional judge Jiri Zemanek said the regional court had sufficient information already when the man was arrested and it should have decided that no detention is needed. There was no point in verifying the facts by the authorities for several weeks, he said.