Summary: 1. Introduction. – 2. Principle of peaceful enjoyment of property in ECtHR case-law. – 3. The ECtHR criteria for assessing the legitimacy of state interference in the right of peaceful enjoyment of the property. – 3.1. Grounds of the state interference provided by law. – 3.2. The purpose of interfering with property rights. – 4. 4. Determination of the principle of proportionality in the Ukrainian legal doctrine and its meaning for the limits of interference with property rights chosen. – 5. Conclusions.
This article considers relevant science and law enforcement practice issues of state intervention's legitimacy in the right to peaceful property enjoyment in criminal proceedings during property seizure. These issues are considered everywhere through international instruments' prism, particularly the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights (ECHR) and Fundamental Freedoms, Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the Convention and the ECtHR case-law. Based on the ECtHR case law, the authors analyze the conditions under which the state may interfere in exercising a protected right, often called criteria for intervention. Based on the fact restrictions are permissible if they are prescribed by law, necessary in a democratic society and pursue a legitimate goal, the authors consider these conditions through the lens of national law enforcement practices of Ukrainian criminal proceedings. The authors emphasize the relevance of these criteria of the legality of individual rights restriction in criminal proceedings since when applying for property seizure, the Ukrainian legislator requires investigating judges to consider reasonableness and restriction proportionality of property rights, and apply the least onerous seizure method, not suspend or excessively restrict a person's lawful business activities, or other consequences significantly affecting others’ interests. Due to the amendment of the Ukrainian criminal procedure legislation, the practice is slowly approaching the European Court of Human Rights practice's European standards. However, proper systematic, logical and consistent court decisions limiting the human right to peaceful property possession remain critical. Based on the study, the authors offer a model of logical reasoning, following which the investigating judges can correctly formulate the motivational part of the decision to satisfy or deny the request for property seizure. Particular attention is paid to the reasonableness, suitability, necessity, and proportionality of the means of restricting the right to peaceful enjoyment of the property and describes each of them.