Criminal proceedings against Kossowski (Case C-486/14) – WLR Daily

Criminal proceedings against Kossowski (Case C-486/14)

‘The accused fled from Germany to Poland after being accused of committing a criminal offence in Germany, and a criminal investigation was initiated against him in that state. The Polish authorities subsequently arrested the accused with a view to the enforcement of a term of imprisonment to which he had been sentenced in Poland in a different case. Subsequently, the Polish authorities opened an investigation procedure against the accused, accusing him of an offence based on his actions in Germany but decided eventually to terminate the criminal proceedings for lack of sufficient evidence. The Higher Regional Court, Hamburg, hearing an appeal brought by the Hamburg Public Prosecutor’s Office against that decision, took the view that under the German law, the evidence against the accused was sufficient to justify the opening of trial proceedings before the Regional Court, Hamburg, and the acceptance of the indictment for the purposes of those proceedings, unless that was barred by the principle of ne bis in idem (protection from multiple prosecutions in different member states) laid down in article 54 of the Convention Implementing the Schengen Agreement of 14 June 1985 between the Governments of the States of the Benelux Economic Union, the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic on the gradual abolition of checks at their common borders (1995) (OJ 2000 L239, p 19) (the “CISA”) and article 50 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. Accordingly, the Hamburg court referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union for a preliminary ruling a number of questions on the interpretation of those provisions.’

WLR Daily, 30th June 2016