Inhumane Treatment? – Murray v. The Netherlands

A case before the European Court of Human Rights called Murray v. The Netherlands involves Mr. Murray, a Dutch national, who has been convicted of murder and has received a life sentence. Mr. Murray was born in 1953. He was convicted of murder in 1980 for the killing of his former girlfriend’s 6-year old niece. He wanted to get revenge for her ending the relationship. He is currently supposed to be detained in a Correctional Institution on the island of Aruba. However, he is currently at a nursing home on the island of Curaçao due to his declining health. Since his sentencing, Mr. Murray has filed numerous appeals, revisions, and pardons. They have all been unsuccessful. Then in September 2012, the Aruba courts submitted Mr. Murray’s sentencing up for periodic review. After thorough review of psychological reports regarding his mental health, which showed he was suffering from various mental health problems, the court upheld his life sentence. Now, Mr. Murray has brought this case before the European Court of Human Rights. He complains that his life sentence with no possibility of review and the conditions of his detention are violations of Article 3, which is the prohibition of inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment. The European Court of Human Rights will hear this case on January 14, 2015. 

How do you think the European Court of Human Rights will decide? Do you think the Court will side with Mr. Murray due to his age and health conditions? Is Mr. Murray’s life sentence inhumane? Was his sentencing more fitting initially than it is now due to his declining health? Should he now receive a reduced sentencing? Why do you think the Aruba courts never reviewed his appeals? Do these refusals really amount to inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment , therefore, being an Article 3 violation as Mr. Murray argues?

Source: ECHR

Image: Yahoo

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