Case of European Court of Human Rights, November 24, 1993 (case Imbrioscia v. Switzerland)

Resolution Date:November 24, 1993

No violation of Art. 6-1+6-3-c


Information Note on the Court’s case-law No.

November 1993

Imbrioscia v. Switzerland - 13972/88

Judgment 24.11.1993

Article 6

Article 6-1

Fair hearing

Article 6-3-c

Defence through legal assistance

Non-attendance by a lawyer at several interrogations of a suspect by the police and by the district prosecutor: no violation

[This summary is extracted from the Court’s official reports (Series A or Reports of Judgments and Decisions). Its formatting and structure may therefore differ from the Case-Law Information Note summaries.]

  1.               Primary purpose of Article 6: to ensure a fair trial by a "tribunal" competent to determine "any criminal charge", but did not follow that it had no application to pre-trial proceedings - in particular requirements of paragraph 3 might also be relevant at that stage if and in so far as the fairness of the trial was likely to be seriously prejudiced by an initial failure to comply with them.

  2.               Right to defend oneself or through legal assistance - Article 6 § 3 (c) did not specify manner of exercising that right: States left choice of means of securing it in their system, it being borne in mind that Convention was designed to guarantee rights that were practical and effective - application of provision to preliminary investigation depended on the special features of the proceedings in question and the circumstances of the case.

  3.               Domestic proceedings taken as a whole:

(a)              Investigation proceedings

(i)              Lack of necessary legal...

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