The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to Review 'FBK Case' Complaints

February 09, 2024

The European Court of Human Rights has agreed to examine the complaints filed by Alexey Navalny, the Anti-Corruption Foundation, and its staff against Russia, merging all 140 complaints into one case. This indicates that the Court has acknowledged our stance: numerous searches, account arrests, and ultimately the dissolution of the organization are parts of a single scheme by which Putin attempted to dismantle the political movement founded by Navalny.

The Putin regime has consistently persecuted the Anti-Corruption Foundation and Alexey Navalny's other political groups since their formation. In the wake of protests related to the Moscow City Duma elections in August 2019, FBK employees were charged in a criminal case for laundering allegedly criminally obtained funds. Simultaneously, the foundation's office was subjected to numerous and extensive searches, with all assets seized, down to lighting fixtures. The Investigative Committee also carried out hundreds of searches across Russia at our employees' homes, arresting their personal accounts. No further investigative measures were pursued – the case was specifically engineered for searches and seizures, becoming known as the 'FBK Case,' which ultimately led to no formal charges.

In March 2020, we filed our first complaint with the ECHR, arguing that  the actions constituted political persecution of Navalny's organizations, bearing no relation to justice and intended solely to obstruct the organization's function. In 2021 and 2022, we approached the European Court concerning the decision to liquidate FBK and the headquarters and their designation as extremist. This not only criminalized any activities by Navalny and his supporters but also stripped them of their electoral rights.

Altogether, we submitted 140 complaints to the ECHR, with the last submitted on December 9, 2022. In all complaints, we argued that these were not isolated incidents of rights violations but deliberate state actions for the political persecution of Navalny and the organizations he created. The Court's decision to consolidate the complaints into one case shows that our arguments were heard.

The Court has accepted these complaints for consideration, marking progress past the stage where most ECHR petitions are dismissed. The next step – consideration on the merits – may take several years. The process could be expedited by the fact that Russia does not respond to the ECHR's letters and has voluntarily chosen not to participate in the case. This means the country will not challenge the statements made in our filings.

Should the Court rule in favor of our complaints, it would confirm that Russia unlawfully targeted the organization and its employees, unjustly limiting the electoral rights of tens of thousands who supported the foundation financially.


other news

The Anti-Corruption Foundation (EIN: 85-0774334) is a US registered 501(c)(3) private foundation. US donations are fully tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Click here to view the registration details.