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The Melloni and Åkerberg Fransson judgments: The incoming tide of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights?

15 April 2013

UCL Laws Symposium

organised by the Centre of Law and Governance in Europe

Date: Tuesday 23rd April 2013

Venue: UCL Faculty of Laws, Bentham House. Endsleigh Gardens, London, WC1H 0EG

About this event: The Centre of European Law and Governance at UCL Laws will hold a symposium on the recent landmark judgments of the EU Court of Justice in Case C-399/11 Stefano Melloni and Case C-617/10 Åkerberg Fransson (26 February 2013).

The judgments make important statements about the scope, meaning and effect of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. They do so in cases involving a potent mix of EU Charter rights, domestic constitutional rights, surrender under the EU arrest warrant, and domestic criminal prosecutions. Melloni concerned the first reference from the Spanish Tribunal Constitucional. The Court of Justice decided that the Tribunal could not apply a higher standard of human rights protection than that of the EU Charter, when surrendering a person under the European arrest warrant. In Åkerberg Fransson the Court decided that a Swedish criminal prosecution for tax fraud involving VAT comes within the scope of the Charter, as it constitutes implementation of EU law.

The judgments have significant implications, also for the application of the EU Charter in the United Kingdom, including in criminal law cases. The Court of Justice has earlier confirmed that the UK/Poland Protocol on the Charter is not an opt-out; and the Åkerberg Fransson reasoning is not dependent on whether a Member State participates in EU criminal justice cooperation.

The symposium brings together a panel of experts on EU law and fundamental rights protection. It will take the form of a presentation by each speaker on the judgement and its importance. This will be followed by a general discussion with the audience.

Register here

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