Case of European Court of Human Rights, July 30, 1998 (case Valenzuela Contreras v. Spain)

Resolution Date:July 30, 1998
SUMMARY

Violation of Article 8 - Right to respect for private and family life (Article 8-1 - Respect for correspondence Respect for private life)

 
FREE EXCERPT

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

July 1998

Valenzuela Contreras v. Spain - 27671/95

Judgment 30.7.1998

Article 8

Article 8-1

Respect for correspondence

Respect for private life

Monitoring of telephone line in connection with criminal proceedings against subscriber: 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.]

I.              ARTICLE 6 OF THE CONVENTION

Compass of case delimited by Commission’s decision on admissibility – Court had no jurisdiction to revive issues declared inadmissible.

Conclusion: no jurisdiction (unanimously).

II.              ARTICLE 8 OF THE CONVENTION

A.              Applicability

Telephone calls from a person’s home came within notions of “private life” and “correspondence” referred to in Article 8 § 1 – point not disputed.

B.              Compliance

  1.               General principles

    Recapitulation of Court’s case-law.

  2.               Application of those principles in instant case

    (a)  Whether there had been an interference

    Tapping of applicant’s telephone line constituted “interference by a public authority” in exercise of right to respect for his private life and correspondence – point not disputed.

    (b)  Was the interference justified

    (i)  Was the interference “in accordance with the law”

    Not contested that there was legal basis in Spanish law.

    No doubt in instant case that law was accessible.

    Foreseeability of law: telephone tappings constituted serious interference with right to respect for private life and correspondence – had to be based on an especially precise “law”.

    In sphere of monitoring telephone communications guarantees stating extent of authorities’ discretion and manner in which it was to be exercised had to be set out in detail in...

To continue reading

REQUEST YOUR TRIAL