Varuh ДЌlovekovih pravic

The Human Rights Ombudsman to Lodge a Request for a Review of the Constitutionality of the Amendment to the Financial Administration Act

Simbolna slika: sodniška tehtnica

After examining the Act Amending the Financial Administration Act (ZFU-B), the Human Rights Ombudsman of the Republic of Slovenia (Ombudsman) decided to request the initiation of the procedure for the review of the constitutionality at the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Slovenia. According to the amendment, the head of the financial administration may decide to use technical aids or tracking devices that use the global positioning system (GPS) to collect data on position and movement. “According to the Ombudsman's assessment, this is an invasion of privacy, which is a constitutionally guaranteed human right. In addition, prior judicial supervision is not envisaged when ordering the said measure. According to the amendment to the act, the measure may only be adopted on the basis of grounds for suspecting that the most serious violations of tax regulations have been committed. Which is a relatively low standard of proof. In addition, the amendment does not clearly specify how long such a measure may last. The aforementioned arrangement would thus deviate greatly from the arrangement of similar interventions in other legal proceedings, such as criminal proceedings. In view of the aforementioned concerns and since the amendment to the act raises many doubts about the constitutionality of the act in the public as well, the Ombudsman has decided to also refer it to the Constitutional Court for review,” Ombudsman Svetina explains his decision.
He also added that the institution of the Human Rights Ombudsman is independent in its work and decisions regarding the initiation of the procedure for the assessment of constitutionality before the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Slovenia. Svetina also emphasises that "this is how we have acted so far and we will continue to do so, which Article 4 of the Human Rights Ombudsman Act ultimately requires us to do. We make our decisions impartially and not on the basis of the expectations or requests of individuals, but on the basis of expert arguments."