He dies while awaiting justice, with others. The European Court of Human Rights says it was entitled to appeal. The Supreme Court had considered it inadmissible.
The European Court of Human Rights condemns Italy for violating the principles of due process. In the sentence 55064 of 28 October the European Court finds that the Supreme Court assigns a disproportionate weight to formal documents, to the detriment of the substance. The criteria envisaged by the Italian code for appeals to the Supreme Court are excessively formal, with a consequent violation of art. 6/1 of the ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights).
The Supreme Court of Cassation represents the judge of the legitimacy of last resort of the sentences issued by the ordinary judiciary: in essence, there is an appeal for errors of law. Filing an appeal to the Supreme Court requires qualified lawyers and is complex. But even if the amount of work in the Supreme Court affects the functioning of the appeals, these they must not be interpreted too formally, limiting the right of access and thus affecting the substance of this right that the citizen has.
The case. The person making the appeal is the manager of a commercial company in Catania. In November 2003, the owner of the shops that had been rented to the person notified a request for eviction. In March 2008, the Court of Catania ordered the termination of the rental contract, with the order to leave the premises. In October 2009, the Catania Court of Appeal confirmed the sentence. But in March 2010 the person appealed to the Supreme Court, exposing about fifty pages a summary of the subject of the dispute and the conduct of the procedure, indicating the reasons for the appeal and the motivation for the contested sentence, with the findings and documents correctly presented. But the Court of Cassation declares the appeal inadmissible. Hence the presentation of a further appeal to the European Court of Human Rights which on 28 October last expressed itself in favor of the applicant. For the Cassation, however, he had not indicated, for each reason, the hypotheses of appeal. But according to the Strasbourg judges, the criteria had been sufficiently met.
Meanwhile, the man died. His heirs and those who resorted to him, however, have moved on.
The first section of the ECHR, composed of President Ksenija Turković and judges Péter Paczolay, Alena Poláčková, Gilberto Felici, Erik Wennerström, Raffaele Sabato, Lorena Schembri Orland, and Renata Degener, section chancellor, have decided that for this reason Italy he will have to compensate the man with 9,600 euros plus any tax that may be due on that sum.
According to European judges, “even if the workload of the Court of Cassation described by the government risks posing difficulties in the ordinary functioning of the treatment of appeals”, the right to justice cannot be limited, that is, “they must not be interpreted in a too formal to limit the right of access to a court in such a way or to an extent that it affects the very substance of that right “.
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