01 January 2019

Systematic full body searches of prisoners

The High Commissioner received several complaints about the particularly body search regime applied at the remand prison. The complaints concerned both the frequency of these searches, and the manner in which they were carried out. Upon investigation, the High Commissioner found that the searches carried out on the prisoners who made the complaints were in line with application regulations, and reflected no willingness to persecute a particular prisoner. However, the High Commissioner did find that the current practice of full body searches was not compliant with ECHR case law in this area, and concluded that the authorities needed to look at the issue as an urgent priority, in order to ensure that the practices followed respect the dignity and fundamental rights of prisoners, by ending the practice of systematic full body searches and by instead using targeted searches, along with random spot searches.

The entire recommendation is available on the site in french version only.