Judgement 44810/20

Applicant name NOORZAE
Applicant type Natural person (immigrant)
Number of applicants 1
Country Denmark
Application no. 44810/20
Date 05/09/2023
Judges Gabriele Kucsko-Stadlmayer, President,
 Faris Vehabović,
 Iulia Antoanella Motoc,
 Branko Lubarda,
 Anja Seibert-Fohr,
 Ana Maria Guerra Martins,
 Anne Louise Bormann,
Institution Court
Type Judgment
Outcome Art. 8 Violation
Reason Not necessary (prevention disorder and crime)
Type of privacy Private life
Keywords Expulsion and reintry ban; private life; disproportionate
Facts of the caseThe applicant was born in Afghanistan in 1995. In 2000, when he was five years old, he entered Denmark and was granted a residence permit on the basis of family reunion. When he was a minor (between 15 and 18 years old), he was convicted of violence and sentenced to thirty days’ imprisonment, suspended and of offences including violence and sentenced to sixty days’ imprisonment, suspended.  As an adult, the applicant was fined several times for theft and vandalism and violations of the Controlled Substances Act and the Traffic Act. In 2019, the applicant was convicted for being in possession of around 15.7 kg of cannabis intended for distribution. He was also convicted of violence, possession of a knife and having driven a vehicle without a driving licence.  The applicant appealed to the High Court, before which he stated that after his release, he had undergone therapy and had also taken up his studies again to become a kindergarten teacher. The High Court, however, found the applicant guilty of an additional count of attempted threats, and therefore increased the sentence to one year and three months’ imprisonment. Moreover, it issued an expulsion order with a twelve-year re-entry ban.
AnalysisThe sentence obviously interfered with applicants private life, was in accordance with the law and served the interest of preventing crime and disorder. As to the question of necessity, the ECtHR acknowledges that the applicant’s crimes were of such a nature that they could have had serious consequences for the lives of others, that he was sentenced to one year and three months’ imprisonment and that he had a criminal track record. Remarkably, however, the ECtHR notes that, prior to the case at hand, apart from the two offences committed as a minor, which involved violence, the offences committed by the applicant as an adult concerned vandalism, theft, traffic offences and violations of the legislation on controlled substances, all of which resulted in fines, and none of which indicated that in general he posed a threat to public order. The Court also observes that the applicant had not previously been cautioned about the risk of expulsion or given a conditional expulsion order and that he had undergone therapy and taken up his studies again upon being released after serving his sentence. He had attempted to reintegrate himself into Danish society after serving his sentence, and that the expulsion of the applicant with a re‑entry ban for twelve years, although it had discretion to reduce the duration of the ban, was harsh. Finally, the Court points out that the applicant practically lived in Denmark for all his life and that his ties with his country of birth, Afghanistan, were virtually non-existent. Thus, the expulsion combined with a re‑entry ban for twelve years was disproportionate.
Other Article violation?
Damage awarded that in respect of costs and expenses, the respondent State is to pay the applicant, within three months from the date on which the judgment becomes final in accordance with Article 44 § 2 of the Convention, EUR 5,400 (five thousand four hundred euros), to be converted into the currency of the respondent State at the date of settlement, plus any tax that may be chargeable to the applicant;
Documents Judgment