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Application no. 24216/02
by Suren Nagapetovich ARUTYUNOV
against Russia

The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting on 24 October 2006 as a Chamber composed of:

Mr C.L. Rozakis, President,
Mr L. Loucaides,
Mrs F. Tulkens,
Mrs N. Vajić,
Mr A. Kovler,
Mr D. Spielmann,
Mr S.E. Jebens, judges,
and Mr S. Quesada, Deputy Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application lodged on 2 August 2001,

Having regard to the decision to apply Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and examine the admissibility and merits of the case together.

Having deliberated, decides as follows:


The applicant, Mr Suren Nagapetovich Arutyunov, is a Russian national who was born in 1969 and lives in St. Petersburg. The respondent Government are represented by Mr P. Laptev, the Representative of the Russian Federation at the European Court of Human Rights.

The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.

On 31 January 2000 the applicant was arrested. On the following day he retained a lawyer. Subsequently, he retained the second lawyer, Mr K., who assisted him until 23 August 2000, when Mr K. was excluded from the proceedings. The applicant also unsuccessfully requested investigation authorities to appoint his wife as his “lay defender”.

The applicant was charged with organisation of, and participation in, a criminal enterprise and extortion and he was placed in remand centre no. IZ-47/1 in St. Petersburg.

In mid-May and August 2000 policemen allegedly intimidated and ill-treated him, inducing him to confess.

On 27 February 2001 the Dzerzhinskiy District Court extended the applicant’s detention. On 27 March 2001 the St. Petersburg City Court did not accept the notice of appeal lodged by the applicant’s wife because she was not an advocate. It considered the applicant’s points of appeal and upheld the decision of 27 February 2001.

The applicant was released on bail on 27 June 2003.

On 15 July 2004 the St. Petersburg City Court found the applicant guilty of participation in a criminal gang, extortion and negligent manslaughter and gave him a suspended sentence of eight years, conditioned on four years’ probation. On 17 March 2005 the Supreme Court upheld the conviction on the charge of participation in a criminal gang.


The applicant complained under Articles 3, 5, 6, 7 and 13 of the Convention that the authorities had ill-treated him in 2000, that he had been detained in appalling conditions, that his pre-trial detention had been unlawful and long, that Mr K. had been excluded from the proceedings, that his wife had not been allowed to represent him, that on 27 March 2001 his wife’s statement of appeal had been disallowed, and that the criminal proceedings had been excessively long and unfair.


On 12 September 2005 the application was communicated to the respondent Government.

On 27 January 2006 the Government’s observations on the admissibility and merits of the application were received and the applicant was invited to submit written observations in reply by 1 May 2006.

On 14 February 2006 the applicant successfully asked the President of the Chamber to allow him to represent himself and use the Russian language in the proceedings.

On 27 February 2006 the English version of the Government’s observations was forwarded to the applicant. The time-limit for the submission of the applicant’s observations remained unaffected.

As the applicant’s observations on the admissibility and merits had not been received by 1 May 2006, on 12 June 2006 the applicant was advised by registered mail that the failure to submit observations might result in the strike-out of the application.

As it follows from the advice of receipt which returned to the Court, the letter of 12 June 2006 reached the applicant on 18 July 2006.

The applicant did not reply.

The Court recalls Article 37 of the Convention which, in the relevant part, reads as follows:

“1. The Court may at any stage of the proceedings decide to strike an application out of its list of cases where the circumstances lead to the conclusion that

(a) the applicant does not intend to pursue his application;


However, the Court shall continue the examination of the application if respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and the Protocols thereto so requires.”

The Court notes that the applicant was requested to submit written observations on the admissibility and merits of the case. He subsequently received a reminder thereof. The applicant was also informed about the consequence of his failure to submit the observations. No response has been received to date. The Court infers therefrom that the applicant does not intend to pursue his application. Furthermore, in accordance with Article 37 § 1 in fine, the Court finds no special circumstances regarding respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require the further examination of this case (cf. Ivanchikov v. Ukraine (dec.), no. 60726/00, February 2006).

In these circumstances it considers that Article 29 § 3 of the Convention should no longer apply to the case and it should be struck out of the list in accordance with Article 37 § 1 (a) of the Convention.

For these reasons, the Court unanimously

Decides to discontinue the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and to strike the application out of its list of cases.

Santiago Quesada Christos Rozakis
Deputy Registrar President