Article 18 - Right to asylum
Article 47 - Right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial
Key facts of the case:
Actions for failure to fulfil obligations – Area of freedom, security and justice – Asylum policy – Directives 2013/32/EU and 2013/33/EU – Procedure for granting international protection – Grounds of inadmissibility – Concepts of ‘safe third country’ and ‘first country of asylum’ – Assistance given to asylum seekers – Criminalisation – Prohibition on entry to the border transit zone of the relevant Member State.
Outcome of the case:
On those grounds, the Court (Grand Chamber) hereby:
1. Declares that Hungary has failed to fulfil its obligations under:
2. Dismisses the action as to the remainder;
3. Orders Hungary to bear its own costs and to pay four fifths of the costs of the European Commission;
4. Orders the European Commission to bear one fifth of its costs.
99) In the light of those factors, Paragraph 353/A(1)(a) of the Criminal Code, read in conjunction with Paragraph 353/A(2) and (3) thereof, must be held to be a restriction on the rights enshrined in those provisions, which, moreover, contribute to giving concrete expression to the right enshrined in Article 18 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (‘the Charter’).
121) It is apparent from the Court’s case-law that a lawyer must actually be able to carry out satisfactorily his or her task of advising, defending and representing his or her client, failing which that client would be deprived of the rights conferred on him or her by Article 47 of the Charter (see, to that effect, judgment of 15 July 2021, Commission v Poland (Disciplinary regime for judges), C‑791/19, EU:C:2021:596, paragraph 206 and the case-law cited).
124) However, the fact remains that it would be contrary to Article 47 of the Charter if, for the purpose of accessing a court or tribunal with the power to ensure respect for the rights guaranteed to that person by EU law, a person were compelled to infringe a legal rule or obligation or to be subject to the penalty corresponding to that offence (see, to that effect, judgment of 6 October 2020, État luxembourgeois(Right to bring an action against a request for information in tax matters), C‑245/19 and C‑246/19, EU:C:2020:795, paragraph 66 and the case-law cited).
132) It follows that that provision is capable of strongly discouraging any person wishing to provide any assistance whatsoever for the purposes of making or lodging an application for asylum, irrespective of the capacity in which that person is involved, despite the fact that that assistance is intended solely to enable a third-country national or stateless person to exercise the fundamental right to apply for asylum in a Member State, as guaranteed in Article 18 of the Charter and given specific expression in Article 6 of Directive 2013/32.