Svinarenko and Slyadnev v. Russia was a case heard on September 18, 2013 by the European Court of Human Rights. The case involved criminal defendants being detained in metal cages during their hearings on their cases. The applicants were Aleksandr Svinarenko and Valentin Slyadnev, both are Russian nationals that live in the Yagodninskiy District of the Magadan Region of Russia. They were both accused with the commission of violent crimes including robbery. Both of the applicants based their applications on Article 3, which concerns the prohibition of torture and of inhuman or degrading treatment, and Article 6 § 1, which is the right to a fair trial within a reasonable time. Svinarenko and Slyadnev both alleged that they were subjected to “humiliating treatment” when they were forced to be in a metal cage for their trial in court. Furthermore, their applications complained about the unreasonable length of the criminal proceedings against them.
The European Court of Human Rights ruled that there was a violation of both Articles 3 and 6 § 1. Svinarenko and Slyadnev were both awarded compensation of EUR 7,500 each (non-pecuniary damage).
Do you agree with the Court’s ruling? Was compensation the right form of relief? Is EUR 7,500 enough for the humiliation that both Svinarenko and Slyadnev underwent? Do you agree with the practice of keeping criminal defendants detained in metal cages when in court for their trials? Why would such a practice even exist anywhere in today’s world? Is it really necessary? I believe it is an unnecessary practice and I was quite shocked that this actually happened in today’s day and age. Why would Russia have such a practice in place in their court systems? Is it to protect the judge or is there some other reason? What are your thoughts on this practice.