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CJEU Case C-329/11 / Judgment

Alexandre Achughbabian v Préfet du Val-de-Marne.

Deciding Body type:
Court of Justice of the European Union
Deciding Body:
Court (Grand Chamber)
Decision date:
06/12/2011

Key facts of the case:

Reference for a preliminary ruling: Cour d'appel de Paris - France.
Area of freedom, security and justice - Directive 2008/115/EC - Common standards and procedures for returning illegally staying third-country nationals - National legislation making provision, in the event of illegal staying, for a sentence of imprisonment and a fine.

Outcome of the case:

On those grounds, the Court (Grand Chamber) hereby rules:

Directive 2008/115/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2008 on common standards and procedures in Member States for returning illegally staying third-country nationals must be interpreted as:

  • precluding legislation of a Member State laying down criminal penalties for illegal stays, in so far as that legislation permits the imprisonment of a third-country national who, though staying illegally in the territory of the said Member State and not being willing to leave that territory voluntarily, has not been subject to the coercive measures referred to in Article 8 of that directive and has not, being placed in detention with a view to the preparation and carrying out of his removal, yet reached the end of the maximum term of that detention; and
  • not precluding such legislation in so far as the latter permits the imprisonment of a third-country national to whom the return procedure established by the said directive has been applied and who is staying illegally in that territory with no justified ground for non-return.