The decision of the ECHR of December 01, 2020 in the case "Yevgeniy Dmitriyev v. Russia" (aplication No. 17840/06).
In 2006, the applicant was assisted in the preparation of the aplication. Subsequently, the aplication was communicated to the Russian Federation.
In the case, an aplication was successfully considered about the failure of the authorities to take sufficient measures to eliminate noise and other negative factors caused by the activities of the internal affairs department located near the applicant's place of residence. The case involved a violation of the requirements of article 8 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE CASE
The applicant's apartment was located in a house in the basement of which the district department of internal Affairs and the cells of the temporary detention facility were located. The applicant repeatedly complained to various authorities of the Russian Federation about noise and other negative factors caused by the activities of the department and the temporary detention facility, before he sold the apartment and moved out of this apartment in 2008.
Regarding compliance with article 8 of the Convention. (a) Applicability. The European Court had to determine whether the annoying daily noise coming from the internal affairs department reached the minimum level of significance of influencing the lives of the residents of the house to be considered an interference prohibited by Article 8 of the Convention.
The applicant did not provide any direct evidence that the noise in his apartment exceeded the permissible norms. However, from the results of the inspection conducted by the Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Welfare (Rospotrebnadzor), it followed that the authorities of the Russian Federation did not comply with the relevant norms of the legislation of the Russian Federation, in particular, concerning the regulation of noise levels, as well as in general other inconveniences caused to the applicant. In addition, the courts of the Russian Federation, after hearing the applicant and the witnesses, decided that the applicant's right to rest was violated by the activities of the internal affairs department and the noise coming from the cells of the temporary detention facility. It followed from the case file that the authorities of the Russian Federation themselves admitted that the internal affairs department was located in a room not intended for the accommodation of such a State authority. As a result, despite the fact that the case materials did not indicate that the applicant's health was under threat, for 13 years he suffered around the clock from the activities of the internal affairs department and the poor sanitary conditions of its premises. Consequently, the inconveniences caused by the placement of the internal affairs department in a residential building had a significant and lasting effect on the applicant's private life and his right to respect for his home.
(b) Whether the interference was justified. The daily functioning of the Internal Affairs Department in the present case directly violated the applicant's rights guaranteed by Article 8 of the Convention, therefore the interference should have been justified, in connection with which the authorities of the Russian Federation had a wide discretion (see the Decision of the Grand Chamber of the European Court in the case "Hatton and Others v. United Kingdom" of 8 July 2003, complaint No. 36022/97). However, the response measures prescribed by the authorities of the Russian Federation were either insufficient, or were applied untimely and ineffectively, or were not implemented in practice at all.
In particular, in 1996 the applicant notified the authorities about the problems caused by the activities of the Internal Affairs Department in the apartment building in which he lived. Nevertheless, despite the fact that the head of the territorial department of internal Affairs admitted that the Department of Internal Affairs was located in a room "not intended for such purposes", no further action was taken in this regard, and the applicant was informed that it was actually impossible to move the Department of Internal Affairs to another place. In addition, the authorities of the Russian Federation did not respond in any way to the collective complaint filed by the applicant and his neighbors in May 2000.
In September 2000, the court found a violation of the applicant's right to rest due to the placement of the internal affairs department in the residential building where the applicant lived. However, the enforcement proceedings were accompanied by long delays, which only prolonged the applicant's suffering from noise and other negative factors. The European Court took into account the difficulties and delays that usually accompany the attempts of the authorities to find and allocate appropriate resources and assign the necessary funding for such publicly significant projects. At the same time, it took the authorities of the Russian Federation almost seven years from the date of the court decision to simply approve the project and budget for the construction of a new building of the Department of Internal Affairs. No data was provided on the reasons for such a long response period, whether any interdepartmental projects were considered or negotiations were held during this period, or whether any temporary solution could have been proposed until the problem was finally resolved. In the absence of reasonable explanations on the part of the authorities of the Russian Federation, the process in question took an excessively long time, which made the measures taken by the authorities ineffective and unable to protect the applicant's rights.
In conclusion, even if the authorities of the Russian Federation were right when they claimed that the placement of the internal affairs department in the basement of the apartment building in which the applicant lived was legal at the time of construction, in 2006 the authorities of the Russian Federation were notified by their own competent authorities that the situation complained by the applicant violated the sanitary rules and regulations in force during the period relating to the circumstances of the present case. Nevertheless, no real actions were taken to eliminate the factors causing the applicant concern, and the process of moving the internal affairs department to another building, the order for which was contained in the decision of the relevant domestic court as a solution to the existing problem, was improperly delayed until 2008. For the applicant, the situation under appeal lasted for 13 years and led to the fact that he was forced to sell this apartment in 2008 and move to another housing, which he bought with his own money.
Thus, the authorities of the Russian Federation did not establish a fair balance between, on the one hand, the interests of the local community in the form of protecting order and maintaining security and the application of laws by law enforcement officers of the Russian Federation and, on the other hand, the interests of the applicant in the effective exercise of his right to respect for private life and housing.
The case involved a violation of the requirements of article 8 of the Convention (adopted unanimously).
In the application of article 41 of the Convention. The European Court awarded the applicant 5,000 euros in compensation for non-pecuniary damage.