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Supreme Court of Denmark

Conditions for applying the provisions of the EU Criminal Enforcement Act not met 
19-01-2017 

Case no. 209/2016

Judgement delivered on 19 January 2017


The Prosecution Service
vs.
T


A penalty of one year in prison imposed in Poland should be enforced in Denmark under the provisions of the Act on International Enforcement of Criminal Decisions, and the penalty should be converted to the penalty that would likely be imposed in a similar case in Denmark

A court in Poland imposed an unconditional sentence of one year’s imprisonment on T in 2009. In January 2013, Poland requested that T be extradited for enforcement of his sentence. In March 2014, the Danish Ministry of Justice found that the conditions for extraditing T for enforcement had been met; however, they concluded that T should not be extradited, as Denmark would take over enforcement.

T referred the case to the courts, and the issue before the Supreme Court was whether the enforcement was covered by the EU Criminal Enforcement Act or by the Act on International Enforcement of Criminal Judgments.

The parties agreed that the provisions of the Act on International Enforcement of Criminal Judgments applied and submitted a joint claim that the High Court’s judgment should be set aside and the case remitted for reconsideration by the District Court.

The Supreme Court based its decision on the fact that the conditions for applying the provisions of the EU Criminal Enforcement Act had not been met, as Poland had made a declaration in accordance with Article 28(2) of Council Framework Decision 2008/909/JHA of 27 November 2008, for which reason the provisions of the Framework Decision did not apply to Polish judgments issued before 11 December 2011. Instead, the provisions that existed before the Framework Decision applied, i.e. Council of Europe Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons of 21 March 1983, which Denmark had implemented by the Act on International Enforcement of Criminal Judgments.

The Supreme Court found that it was of material significance to T which Act applied, as the Danish courts would convert his penalty to a prison sentence that corresponded to the penalty that would likely be imposed in a similar case in Denmark if the Act on International Enforcement of Criminal Judgments applied.

The Supreme Court thus upheld the parties’ joint claim, set aside the District Court’s and High Court’s judgments and remitted the case for reconsideration by the District Court.

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