Portugal / Supreme Court / 538/14.2YRLSB.S2

Appeal lodged by a Ukrainian citizen against a judicial decision
Policy area
Justice, freedom and security
Deciding body type
National Court/Tribunal
Deciding body
Supreme Court of Justice
Decision date
  • Portugal / Supreme Court / 538/14.2YRLSB.S2

    Key facts of the case:

    In this case, a Ukrainian citizen appealed against a judicial decision determining his extradiction to Ukraine. Ukraine requested his extradition on the grounds of him having committed the crime of grievous bodily harm which resulted in the person’s death. In its request, the Ukrainian Republic expressly provided an assurance that under international law, the extradited person would benefit from all the instruments guaranteeing his defence, including the right to legal counsel; furthermore the extradited person would not be subject to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment. Moreover, Ukraine also guaranteed that its request for extradition was not based on political, ethnic, religious or political grounds.

    Outcome of the case:

    The appeal was dismissed. The Supreme Court pointed out that although human dignity was not incompatible with the extradition of persons from one State to another, such incompatibility would only occur if fundamental rights were breached owing to the extradition. The Court stated that Portugal was bound by Article 19 (2) of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and emphasised the fact that the Ukrainian Republic had pledged to give the appellant fair and equitable proceedings and would in no way subject him to ill-treatment. The Supreme Court stressed that Ukraine is party to the European Extradition Convention and noted that the crime committed by the applicant was a common-law crime unconnected with the armed conflict.

  • Paragraphs referring to EU Charter

    In his argument, the appellant claims that the decision under appeal infringes upon the reservation that Portugal made with regard to the European Convention on Extradition, also infringes Article 1 of the Portuguese Constitution, Protocol No. 13 to the European Convention on Human Rights concerning the abolition of the death penalty, Article 2 in the Treaty on European Union which proclaims the value of human dignity, Article 1 in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, as well as the Preamble and Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

    (…) Article 19 (2) in the Charter expressly lays down that ‘no one may be removed, expelled or extradited to a State where there is a serious risk that he or she would be subjected to the death penalty, torture or other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment’.

  • Paragraphs referring to EU Charter (original language)

    O recorrente invoca na sua argumentação que a decisão recorrida viola a reserva efetuada por Portugal à Convenção Europeia de Extradição, o disposto no artigo 1.º da CRP, o Protocolo n.º 13 à Convenção Europeia dos Direitos do Homem, relativo à abolição da pena de morte, o artigo 2.º do Tratado de União Europeia, no segmento em que proclama o valor da dignidade humana, o artigo 1.º da Carta dos Direitos Fundamentais da União Europeia, bem como o Preâmbulo e o artigo 1.º da Declaração Universal dos Direitos do Homem.

    (…) o n.º 2 do artigo 19.º da Carta de Direitos Fundamentais da União Europeia expressamente consagra que «ninguém pode ser (…) extraditado para um Estado onde corra sério risco de ser sujeito a pena de morte, a tortura ou a outros tratos ou penas desumanos ou degradantes».