The European Court of Human Rights ruled on Tuesday that Slovenia violated the rights of a Lithuanian sentenced for a bank robbery when it provided a Russian-language, and not a Lithuanian-language, interpreter.
European Court of Human Rights
© Reuters / Scanpix

Slovenia will have to pay Danas Vizgirda 6,400 euros in non-pecuniary damages and cover 2,500 euros in legal costs.

The Strasbourg court also rejected the Slovenian government's claim that a Russian-language interpreter was provided since the Russian language is widely used in Lithuania.

"No other explanation was provided by the (Slovenian) Government as to what led the authorities, when appointing a Russian interpreter to assist the applicant, to believe that he had sufficient command of that language," the ruling reads.

ECHR concluded that Slovenian institutions had to verify that the applicant had sufficient command of the Russian language before deciding to use this language for interpretation.

Vizgirda was arrested and prosecuted for his involvement in a bank robbery in Slovenia in 2002. The Lithuanian was provided a Russian-language interpreter and documents translated into Russian throughout the whole prosecution process, including the police investigation, the indictment and the judicial process.

Vizgirda and three other Lithuanians were sentenced to prison for robbery, illicit enrichment and a car theft in July, 2002. Vizgirda was sentenced to more than eight years in prison. His appeal was subsequently rejected.

BNS
It is prohibited to copy and republish the text of this publication without a written permission from UAB „BNS“.

Street Art in Vilnius: transforming of post-industrial quarter to open-air gallery

New additions to the always-open Open Gallery in Vilnius include artworks by the Dutch duo TELMO...

After a 17-year break: Lithuanian feature films came back to the Venice Film Festival

Lithuanian filmmakers return to Venice: after a long break, Lithuanian titles and names will be heard...

Lithuania set to declare Sugihara's year in hopes for impulse in ties with Tokyo

Several dozen Lithuanian lawmakers registered an initiative last week to declare 2020 the year of...

Largest radio installation record has been set in Vilnius

A giant construction made up more than 2,000 old radios will sound in unison in Vilnius on the evening...

New International performing arts festival in Kaunas

The first edition of the festival features exceptional, bold, provocative and open projects presented...