On 1 July 2010 the European Court of Human Rights delivered two new judgments under Russian cases: Nikiforov v. Russia (application N 42837/04) and Nedayborshch v. Russia (application N 42255/04). Both cases concern violations of Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms – abuse of the first applicant by the police and lack of an effective investigation into that fact, and detention conditions of the second applicant.
Vyacheslav Nikiforov from Kostroma region complained that in December 2003, in Nerekhta, Kostroma region, the police had beaten him in order to make him confess to robbery. The Court held that tortures had been used in respect of the applicant and the investigation under his application had been ineffective. No criminal proceedings were instigated against those responsible for the battery. The ECtHR awarded Nikiforov 30 000 euro as compensation.
Sergey Nedayborshch who was kept in a remand prison in Kopeysk, Chelyabinsk region, from December 2003 till August 2004 complained about the detention conditions. The remand prison built in 1935 was not designed for long-term detention. The toilet was located outside the building, there were mice and insects in the cells. In addition to that, in the remand prison Mr. Nedayborshch contracted tb which was diagnosed in the remand prison hospital. The Court awarded him 9 000 euro as compensation.
In should be mentioned that these are not the first ECtHR judgments concerning Article 3 violations by Russia. Earlier the European Court issued similar judgments under the application filed by the ICAT in the interests of Maslova, Mikheyev and Buzychkin. We can only hope that they will positively influence the life of the applicants (in case of Mr. Nikiforov) and the penitentiary system as a whole.