ECJR Mohamad Zakaria: Schengen Borders Code – Effective judicial protection / Código de fronteras Schengen – Tutela judicial efectiva

schengen visa_sl_3SENTENCIA TRIBUNAL DE JUSTICIA (Sala Quinta) 17 enero 2013 – Asunto C‑23/12 (Zakaria) / JUDGMENT OF THE COURT (Fifth Chamber) 17 January 2013, in Case C‑23/12 (Zakaria)

La petición de decisión prejudicial tiene por objeto la interpretación del artículo 47 de la Carta de los Derechos Fundamentales de la Unión Europea y de los artículos 6, apartado 1, y 13, apartado 3, del Reglamento (CE) nº 562/2006 del Parlamento Europeo y del Consejo, de 15 de marzo de 2006, por el que se establece un Código comunitario de normas para el cruce de personas por las fronteras (Código de fronteras Schengen). Dicha petición se presentó en el marco del examen de un recurso interpuesto por el Sr. Zakaria contra la denegación de la indemnización por daños y perjuicios reclamada por el interesado a raíz del comportamiento de una autoridad administrativa con ocasión del cruce de la frontera letona.

This request for a preliminary ruling concerns the interpretation of Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (‘the Charter’), and Article 6(1) and Article 13(3) of Regulation (EC) No 562/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 establishing a Community Code on the rules governing the movement of persons across borders (Schengen Borders Code) (OJ 2006 L 105, p. 1). The request has been made in the course of the consideration of an action brought by the claimant, Mr Zakaria, against the refusal to grant his application for damages based on the conduct of an administrative body upon his crossing of the Latvian border.

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Trending Topics: Regulation (EC) No 562/2006 – Community Code on the rules governing the movement of persons across borders (Schengen Borders Code) – Alleged violation of the right to respect for human dignity – Effective judicial protection – Right of access to a court / Reglamento (CE) nº 562/2006 – Código comunitario de normas para el cruce de personas por las fronteras (Código de fronteras Schengen) – Vulneración alegada del derecho al respeto de la dignidad humana – Tutela judicial efectiva – Derecho de acceso a un tribunal.

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Comentario y Fallo.- El órgano jurisdiccional remitente pregunta si el artículo 13, apartado 3, del Reglamento nº 562/2006, interpretado a la luz del vigésimo considerando de dicho Reglamento y del artículo 6, apartado 1, del mismo, así como del artículo 47 de la Carta, obliga a los Estados miembros a garantizar un recurso efectivo contra las supuestas infracciones cometidas durante el procedimiento de adopción de una resolución por la que se autorice la entrada, bien ante un tribunal, bien ante un órgano administrativo que ofrezca, desde el punto de vista institucional y funcional, las mismas garantías que un órgano jurisdiccional. Dado que el órgano jurisdiccional remitente no aportó suficientes datos, el TJUE entiende que no está en condiciones de determinar si la situación del demandante en el procedimiento principal se rige por el Derecho de la Unión en el sentido del artículo 51, apartado 1, de la Carta, según el cual las disposiciones de esta última se dirigen a los Estados miembros únicamente cuando apliquen el Derecho de la Unión (con cita de las SSTJUE de 5 de octubre de 2010, McB., C‑400/10 PPU y de 8 de noviembre de 2012, Iida, C‑40/11). En este sentido, el Tribunal de Justicia entiende que corresponde al órgano jurisdiccional remitente determinar, a la luz de las circunstancias del litigio principal, si la situación del demandante en el procedimiento principal está comprendida en el ámbito del Derecho de la Unión y, en caso afirmativo, si la negativa a reconocer a dicho demandante el derecho a formular sus pretensiones ante un órgano jurisdiccional vulnera los derechos reconocidos en el artículo 47 de la Carta. A este respecto, ha de recordarse que la Guardia de fronteras, al desempeñar sus obligaciones, en el sentido del artículo 6 del mencionado Reglamento, está obligada a respetar plenamente la dignidad humana. En todo caso, corresponde a los Estados miembros establecer en su ordenamiento interno los recursos apropiados para garantizar, respetando el artículo 47 de la Carta, la protección de las personas que hacen valer los derechos que les confiere el artículo 6 del Reglamento nº 562/2006.

Resulta relevante sin embargo  el Considerando 41 de la Sentencia donde el Tribunal aclara que si el órgano jurisdiccional considera, que una situación como la del litigio no está comprendida dentro del ámbito de aplicación del Derecho de la Unión, deberá examinarla a la luz del Derecho nacional, tomando asimismo en consideración el Convenio Europeo para la Protección de los Derechos Humanos y de las Libertades Fundamentales, firmado en Roma el 4 de noviembre de 1950, del que son parte todos los Estados miembros (con cita de la STJUE de 15 de noviembre de 2011, Dereci y otros, C‑256/11).

Tomando en cuenta estas consideraciones el Tribunal emite el siguiente Fallo:

“El artículo 13, apartado 3, del Reglamento (CE) nº 562/2006 del Parlamento Europeo y del Consejo, de 15 de marzo de 2006, por el que se establece un Código comunitario de normas para el cruce de personas por las fronteras (Código de fronteras Schengen), únicamente prevé la obligación de los Estados miembros de establecer un recurso contra las resoluciones de denegación de entrada en su territorio.”

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Consideration of the questions referred.- By its first question, the referring court asks whether Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 provides persons with a right of appeal not only against a decision refusing entry into a Member State, but also against infringements committed in the procedure leading to the adoption of a decision authorising entry. By its second and third questions, the referring court asks whether, if the answer to the first question is in the affirmative, the abovementioned provision requires the Member State to guarantee an effective remedy before a court or before an administrative body which, from an institutional and functional perspective, provides the same guarantees as a court. It is appropriate to consider those questions together. Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 provides that persons refused entry shall have the right to appeal. According to that provision, appeals are to be conducted in accordance with national law. It must be added that Article 13 of Regulation No 562/2006 relates entirely to refusal of entry. As the Latvian Government and the Commission stated, Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 obliges Member States to establish a means of obtaining redress only against decisions to refuse entry. Furthermore, it is apparent that neither the applicant in the main proceedings nor the referring court has questioned the validity of that provision. By its second and third questions, the referring court asks whether in the light of recital 20 in the preamble to, and Article 6(1) of, Regulation No 562/2006, and Article 47 of the Charter, Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 imposes an obligation on Member States to guarantee a right of appeal against infringements alleged to have been committed during the adoption of a decision authorising entry either before a court or before an administrative body which, from an institutional and functional perspective, provides the same guarantees as a court of law. Since those two questions were raised solely in the event that the response to the first question was in the affirmative, namely that Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 provides that a person has a right of appeal not only against a decision refusing entry into a Member State, but also against the infringements alleged by the claimant and described at paragraph 11 of this judgment, they do not require an answer. In any event, the decision to refer does not provide sufficient information regarding the main proceedings, in particular regarding the relevant facts, for the Court to determine the relevance of Article 6 of Regulation No 562/2006 for the purposes of examination of that action. Consequently, the Court is not in a position to determine whether the situation of the claimant in the main proceedings is governed by European Union law within the meaning of Article 51(1) of the Charter, whose provisions are addressed to the Member States only when they are implementing European Union law (see, Case C‑400/10 PPU McB. and Case C‑40/11 Iida 1). It is for the referring court to ascertain, in the light of the facts in the main proceedings, whether the situation of the claimant in the main proceedings is governed by European Union law and, if that is the case, whether a refusal to grant him the right to bring his claims before a court infringes the rights recognised in Article 47 of the Charter. In that respect, it must be noted that border guards performing their duties, within the meaning of Article 6 of Regulation No 562/2006, are required, inter alia, to fully respect human dignity. It is for Member States to provide in their domestic legal system for the appropriate legal remedies to ensure, in compliance with Article 47 of the Charter, the protection of persons claiming the rights derived from Article 6 of Regulation No 562/2006. On the other hand, if that court takes the view, in the light of the response given by the Court of Justice to the first question, that that situation is not governed by European Union law, it must examine it in the light of national law, taking into account also the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, signed at Rome on 4 November 1950, and to which all the Member States are party (see Case C‑256/11 Dereci and Others). In the light of the foregoing considerations, the answer to the questions referred is that Article 13(3) of Regulation No 562/2006 obliges Member States to establish a means of obtaining redress only against decisions to refuse entry.

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