CPT report on the 2016 visit (excerpt), 2017


A. Police establishments


3. Safeguards against the ill-treatment of persons deprived of their liberty


31. The delegation noted that, as a rule, detained persons were provided with an information sheet setting out their rights and duties. However, as was the case in 2011, such sheets were usually given to detained persons only at the time when the protocol of detention was drawn up. Further, at the Detention Facility of the Central Public Order Police in Riga, the information sheet was only available in Latvian. Moreover, it appeared that detained persons did not usually receive any verbal information about their basic rights upon apprehension.

It is also a matter of concern that the above-mentioned information sheet was drafted in a rather legalistic manner (i.e. consisting of excerpts from the CCP, including the text of Section 60.2) and was thus not user-friendly. The CPT is aware that the Latvian police are under a legal obligation to provide detained persons with such a form by virtue of Section 150(3) of the CCP. That said, the Committee considers it essential for detained persons to be provided with an additional information sheet which is very short, simple and drafted in a straightforward manner (the receipt of which they should acknowledge by signature).

In the light of the above, the CPT once again calls upon the Latvian authorities to ensure without further delay that all persons detained by the police – for whatever reason – are fully informed of their above-mentioned fundamental rights as from the very outset of their deprivation of liberty (that is, from the moment when they are obliged to remain with the police). This should be ensured by provision of clear verbal information immediately after apprehension, to be supplemented at the earliest opportunity (that is, immediately upon first entry into police premises) by provision of a written form setting out the detained person’s rights in a simple and straightforward manner. This form should be available in an appropriate range of languages.

Document data: CPT/Inf (2017) 16 ; published 29.06.2017. Link: https://rm.coe.int/pdf/168072ce4f

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