Judgment 34426/20

Applicant nameT.M.V.
Applicant type natural person
Number of applicants 1
Application no. 34426/20
Date 16/01/2024
Judges Faris Vehabović, President,
 Anja Seibert-Fohr,
 Sebastian Răduleţu
Institution Court
Type Judgment
Outcome Art. 8 Violation
Reason Positive obligation
Type of privacy Private life; procedural privacy
Keywords Child abuse; failure to act
Facts of the case The applicant complained about the authorities’ response to the allegations of sexual abuse and about the investigation into those allegations. Although she relied on Articles 3, 6 and 8 of the Convention, the Court will examine the complaint under Articles 3 and 8, together.
AnalysisThe Court examines whether the measures taken by the authorities have been sufficient to protect the applicant from the alleged abuse and whether the mechanism put in place to protect alleged victims was properly implemented. It finds that while initially, the courts granted protection orders for the applicant, after that date they denied a similar request without making any reference to a new psychological assessment of the applicant. The District Court’s conclusion that the applicant was in no danger was not reasoned with regard to the psychologists’ persistent suspicion of sexual abuse and the finding of R.S.V. as the trigger for the applicant’s worrying behaviour. Furthermore, the County Court failed to explain why the applicant’s mental health was no longer a concern warranting protection.

Consequently, the Court is not convinced that, faced with prima facie substantiated allegations of sexual abuse in respect of a very young child, the domestic authorities properly and efficiently assessed the child’s best interest. In their overall response, the domestic authorities did not comply with their positive obligations under Articles 3 and 8 of the Convention.
Other Article violation? Yes, ARticle 3 ECHR
Damage awarded (a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicant, within three months, the following amounts, to be converted into the currency of the respondent State at the rate applicable at the date of settlement:
(i) EUR 12,500 (twelve thousand five hundred euros), plus any tax that may be chargeable, in respect of non-pecuniary damage;
(ii) EUR 2,900 (two thousand nine hundred euros), plus any tax that may be chargeable to the applicant, in respect of costs and expenses;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amounts at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points;
Documents Judgment