Statewatch article: RefNo# 1668
ECJ: Recent cases
Statewatch bulletin, vol 5 no 5
A trade union branch at a plant may not challenge a takeover or sale of the plant in the European Court of Justice, even though the takeover may lead to the closure of the plant or to job losses: CCE Societe Generale des Grandes Sources v Commission, T-96/92.

The equal pay provisions of the Treaty apply equally to piecework schemes as to hourly pay, and the national courts must compare units to see whether there is sex discrimination: Specialarbejderforbundet i Danmark v Dansk Industri, Times 23.6.95.

The EU-Algerian Cooperation Agreement of 1976 entitled the widow of an Algerian worker in receipt of a survivors' pension in France to a statutory supplementary pension: Zoulika Krid v CNAVTS, C-103/94. But the Court ruled that a Turkish worker who had become totally and permanently disabled had no right to stay in an EU country under the EU-Turkey Association Agreement. In an appalling decision, it upheld the refusal of the Dutch authorities to give Ahmed Bozkurt permanent residence, although Mr Bozkurt had worked for a Dutch firm as a long-distance lorry-driver since 1979 and had lived in the Netherlands since then. An accident in 1988 left him severely disabled and in 1991 his residence permit was not renewed. The reasoning of the court was that the purpose of the Ankara agreement was to allow Turks to work in member states, and to live there for the purpose of work. There were no clauses or regulations allowing residence to continue after work had permanently ceased. Ahmed Bozkurt v Staatssecretaris van Justitie, C-434/93, 6.6.95.

ECHR roundup

Cases going to Strasbourg include:

* A prisoner at the Mount in Hertfordshire, Jerry Wilson, is to take a case to Europe alleging a breach of Article 3 ECHR (inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment) after he was wrongly accused in June of swallowing a package of drugs and was forced to defecate in front of three prison officers and then to search his own excrement with his bare hands. He was also subjected to an internal bowel examination. Observer 23.7.95

Cases declared admissible April-September include:

* David Gregory v UK (2229/93): alleging racial prejudice on jury trying Applicant for criminal offence (Article 6(1), right to fair trial). Information Note 126, 9.5.95.

* Hendrik van Mechelen v Netherlands (21363/93): admission at trial of evidence given by anonymous police officers (Article 6(3)(d), right to examine witnesses). Information note 126, 13.6.95

* Mobin Ahmed and others v UK: Unison is funding the case brought by a number of senior local government officers claiming that the clauses of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 which bar them from political activities "infringes rights of freedom of expression and assembly" (Articles 10 and 11). The Commission has said that the UK has a case to answer and Unison intends to proceed to the European Court. Independent 14.9.95

Cases referred to the European Court by the Commission include:

* Gul v Switzerland: A Turkish citizen who has lived in Switzerland since 1983, whose wife joined him in 1987 and who was granted a humanitarian residence permit in 1988, was denied the right to family reunion with his two sons on the basis that his flat was unsuitable and his means insufficient. The Commission decided that this violated Article 8 (right to respect for family life) and referred the case to the European court for hearing in April 1995. European Court of Human Rights press release 290)

* Manoussakis v Greece: The Applicants were convicted in 1990 of establishing a place of worship for Jehovah's witnesses without permission. The Commission decided this violated Article 9 (freedom of thought and conscience) and referred it to the court for hearing. Press release 363

* Mohamed Chorfi v Belgium (21794/93): expulsion of Moroccan national resident in Belgium with parents, brothers and sisters for 25 years. Commission held that this did not viola

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