On April 30, the Department of Administrative Cases of the Senate upheld the judgment of the Administrative Regional Court, which rejected the request to issue a temporary residence permit in the Republic of Latvia to the applicant – a citizen of the Russian Federation and the Dominican Republic. The Senate agrees with the conclusion of the Regional Court that the situation of the applicant is not one in which the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs and the court had to conclude that the residence permit should be granted for humanitarian reasons.

In the present case, the residence permit of a Russian and Dominican citizen has expired who has been declared by Russia to be internationally wanted but Latvia has decided not to extradite him, and the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs does not issue a new residence permit because he does not have a valid passport.

According to the applicant, these are considered humanitarian considerations that when traveling to the Dominican Republic to obtain a travel document, the applicant will be detained because he has been announced in the international INTERPOL search.

The Senate agrees with the applicant that there is a possibility that the applicant may be detained, however the Regional Court has also taken into account such a possibility but concluded that it has no reason to believe that the European Union Member States (Spain, Sweden) through which the applicant could travel to the Dominican Republic, or the Dominican Republic itself would not respect human rights when deciding to extradite a person for prosecution.

The Senate does not see an error in the Regional Court's assessment that the requirement to go to the country of citizenship would be inhumane in itself because the applicant could be subjected to additional procedures. If a person is threatened by criminal liability, in particular for an economic crime, it cannot be qualified as an inhumane threat, but the person must rely on the legal remedies available in the country of citizenship, in this case Russia. In addition, the decision of the Prosecutor General's Office of the Republic of Latvia not to extradite the applicant to the Russian Federation for prosecution is based on a non-rehabilitative basis, namely, the limitation period. This does not mean that the prosecution of a person in the Russian Federation is illegal.

The Senate points out that the circumstances that the applicant's country of citizenship or another country may detain the applicant and theoretically also extradite him to the country of origin and citizenship, where criminal proceedings against the applicant for economic crime have been initiated, shall not be considered as humanitarian grounds for granting a residence permit in the Republic of Latvia.

At the same time, the Senate acknowledges that there may be situations (for example, when a person is a victim of human trafficking), when a residence permit could be issued without a valid travel document. However, this is not the case for the applicant.

Case No SKA-424/2021 (A420256518).


Information prepared by Baiba Kataja, the Press Secretary of the Supreme Court
Tel.: +371 67020396; e-mail: baiba.kataja@at.gov.lv