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Denmark/ Supreme Court/ 97/2018

The Prosecution Service v. S

Deciding Body type:
National Court/Tribunal
Deciding Body:
The Supreme Court
Decision date:
06/02/2019

Key facts of the case:

S was in the custody of the Danish authorities and ordered extradited to Latvia for criminal proceedings, pursuant to the European Arrest Warrant. S protested against the extradition order, referring to his experiences in the prison conditions and other circumstances under an earlier pre-trial confinement in Latvia. S stated that the extradition should be denied pursuant to Section 10 h (2) of the Danish Act On Extradition (udleveringsloven) according to which extradition cannot take place if there is a risk that the person concerned will be subject to torture or other inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment.. Additionally, S stated that extradition would be a violation of Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Article 4 in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.

Denmark has entered into the Framework Decision on the European Arrest Warrant (2002/584/JHA), and the Danish Extradition Act must therefore be read in combination with the relevant EU law including the Charter.

Key legal question:

The question before the Supreme Court was whether the extradition request could be granted or would violate the rights of S pursuant to both national and EU law and the case law of the European Court of Human Rights. 

Outcome of the case:

In the case before the Supreme Court, detailed information was presented regarding the conditions including psychical space and medical help available in the detention facilities in Latvia where S could be expected to be detained. Having examined the information on the detention conditions in Latvia, the Supreme Court found that there was no real risk of persecution on the grounds of his origin or of exposure to torture or other inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in violation of the European Convention of Human Rights Article 3. Accordingly, the Supreme Court found that extradition to Latvia could not be denied under Section 10 h of the Extradition Act in combination with Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Article 4 in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The court did not explicitly assess the detention conditions in Latvia but refers to the information given by the parties.


 [A1]Does the court explicitly assess the detention (and other) conditions in Latvia? Could you summarise findings?

 [A2]We have revised the text to better illustrate the court’s assessment of Latvia.