HCLU succeed: court reached verdict in “squatter” case

On March 3rd the Central District Court of Pest reached the verdict in the Centrum Group case. The “squatters” were represented by Levente Baltay, lawyer at Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (HCLU).

As we reported before the group of young people was charged with misdemeanor for occupying an empty building, owned by the local government. The building has been abandoned and neglected by the local government for 5 years. The aim of the occupiers was to set up a cultural, social and art centre in the abandoned building. Police pressed charges for misdemeanor against the “squatters” and against the journalists reporting from the scene.

The verdict is favorable. The charges against the four journalists were dismissed. The reasoning of the court was that even if the journalist were present at the scene, it was not for the reason of occupying the building. The charges against 2 participants were also dismissed. The reason for the dismissal was that these two persons were invited to the scene by an email, which according to its content invited them for an exhibition followed by a party.

The charges against the 35 persons actually taking part in occupying the building were also dismissed. The court found that as for a fact the action was an unauthorized occupation of the building. However, with regard to the special circumstances the level of danger the society got exposed to by such action was zero. Indeed the effect of the action of the Centrum Group is rather positive than negative from the society’s point of view, as described in the HCLU lawyer’s and also the in court’s reasoning as well.

Share

Related articles

Budapest Pride March to the Parliament Given Green Light

 The Metropolitan Court granted the appeal of the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union and the Hungarian Helsinki Committee and overruled the prohibiting decision of the police. Thus the participants of the Budapest Pride can march from Heroes’ Square to Kossuth Square in 2011.

International protest against the custody of the demonstrators against the WTO meeting

The Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (HCLU) has joined the international campaign organized by civil organizations and private individuals. The campaign is a protest against the brutal behavior towards the “political prisoners” of WTO meeting held in Hong Kong in December.

Human Rights Organizations from Across the Globe Call on UN to Protect Human Rights in the Context of Social Protest

March 20, 2013 GENEVA – As the United Nation’s Human Rights Council prepares to debate a draft motion on social protest, human rights organizations from around the world have joined their voices to call on the UN to provide meaningful protection for this essential democratic right.