Advocate General Kokott: European arrest warrant for the abduction of the son of a former Slovak President to be issued after revocation of an amnesty

(Source: Court of Justice of the EU)

In 1995, members of the Slovak security authorities are alleged to have committed several
offences, including the abduction of a person to a foreign country, robbery and extortion. The victim
of those acts was the son of the then President of Slovakia. On 3 March 1998, the then Prime
Minister of Slovakia, representing the President at a time when the office of President was vacant,
issued an amnesty in respect of the allegations in question. Consequently, the criminal
proceedings subsequently opened on account of those allegations were finally discontinued.
According to Slovak law, the discontinuance of the respective criminal proceedings had the effect
of a judgment of acquittal.

The National Council of Slovakia revoked that amnesty on 5 April 2017. The criminal proceedings
that had been discontinued on account of the amnesty were subsequently reopened.

The Okresný súd Bratislava III (District Court, Bratislava III, Slovakia) is now contemplating the
issuance of a European arrest warrant in respect of one of the accused persons. The Slovak court
therefore seeks to ascertain whether the issuance of such a European arrest warrant, on the one
hand, and the revocation of the amnesty, on the other, are compatible with EU law and in particular
with the EAW Framework Decision 1 and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European
Union. Its concerns are based, in particular, on the ne bis in idem principle, 2 because the
proceedings concerned have already been finally concluded.

Full Press Release – 107/2021 : 17 June 2021 – Opinion of the Advocate General in the case C-203/20

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