Archive February 2019

Sexuelle belästigung darf nicht unbestraft bleiben

Sexuelle Belästigung ist ein Verbrechen! Egal gegenüber welcher Person diese vorgenommen wird. Als Human Rights Defenders e.V. verurteilen wir diese Art von Handlung der örtlichen Sicherheitskräfte auf das Schärfste.


Sexuelle Belästigung
darf nicht unbestraft bleiben

In der Türkei wurde in den vergangenen Tagen eine Studentin, die für die Rechte der Inhaftierten friedlich an einer Protestaktion in Ankara teilnahm, gewaltsam in Gewahrsam genommen. Die Studentin, Merve Demirel, musste dabei nicht nur erniedrigende Handlungen dulden, sondern wurde auch vor laufender Kamera Opfer einer sexuellen Belästigung, welche von demselben Polizisten ausgeübt wurde, der sie in Haft nahm.



Sexuelle Belästigung ist ein Verbrechen! Egal gegenüber welcher Person diese vorgenommen wird.  Als Human Rights Defenders e.V. verurteilen wir diese Art von Handlung der örtlichen Sicherheitskräfte auf das Schärfste.

Darüber hinaus sind wir schockiert über die Stellungnahmen der zuständigen Behörden und des Innenministers Herrn Soylu, der versuchte, dieses Verbrechen mit der Begründung zu rechtfertigen, „dass einzelne Familienmitglieder der Studentin Merve Demirel der Gülen-Bewegung zugehören“. Das der Polizist, der die Studentin sexuell belästigte, auch noch von höchster Ebene der Politik beschützt wird, ist eine Schande für die türkischen Behörden. 

In den letzten Jahren sind Meinungs- und Versammlungsfreiheit in der Türkei leider immer mehr mit „Staatsverrat“ assoziiert und werden von der Politik systematisch untergraben. 

Merve Demirel ist leider kein Einzelfall. In der Türkei wurden nach dem sogenannten Putschversuch 2016 ca. 17.000 Frauen unrechtmäßig inhaftiert und befinden sich weiterhin in Haft. Anwälte in der Türkei berichten von unmenschlichen Haftbedingungen und auch von sexueller Belästigungen gegenüber Frauen seitens der Sicherheitskräfte in den Haftanstalten.

Diese sexuellen Belästigungen und unrechtmäßigen Inhaftierungen müssen ein Ende nehmen! Wir fordern die türkische Regierung dazu auf, rechtsstaatliche Verfahren durchzuführen und sich an die Allgemeine Erklärung der Menschenrechte zu halten.

Rückfragen: 

Human Rights Defenders e.V.
info@humanrights-ev.com


Execution of nine men after an unfair trial in Egypt

Responding to the news that Egyptian authorities have executed nine men convicted after a grossly unfair trial.


Responding to the news that Egyptian authorities have today executed nine men convicted after a grossly unfair trial for the 2015 killing of the country’s former Public Prosecutor, Najia Bounaim, Amnesty International’s North Africa Campaigns Director said:

“By carrying out the executions of these nine men today Egypt has demonstrated an absolute disregard for the right to life.

“Those responsible for the attack that killed Egypt’s former public prosecutor deserve to be punished but executing men who were convicted in trials marred by torture allegations is not justice but a testament to the magnitude of injustice in the country.

Egyptian authorities must urgently halt this bloody execution spree which has seen them repeatedly putting people to death after grossly unfair trials in recent weeks 

Najia Bounaim, North Africa Campaigns Director

“These executions are a stark demonstration of the government’s increasing use of the death penalty, bringing the total number of death sentences implemented in the past three weeks to 15. Egyptian authorities must urgently halt this bloody execution spree which has seen them repeatedly putting people to death after grossly unfair trials in recent weeks.  

 “The international community must not stay silent over this surge in executions. Egypt’s allies must take a clear stand by publicly condemning the authorities’ use of the death penalty, the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.”

Background:

The nine were among 28 men sentenced to death for the killing of the former public prosecutor in an attack in Cairo that took place in June 2015. Several of the men said they were forcibly disappeared and tortured in order to confess to the killing.  

For more information see:

Egypt: Halt imminent execution of nine prisoners on death row

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases without exception regardless of the nature of the crime, the characteristics of the offender, or the method used by the state to kill the prisoner. The death penalty is a violation of the right to life.

Interview with the legal expert Yasir Gökçe on the current judgment of the court of cassation on ByLock

As the team of the ‘Human rights defenders (HRDs)’, we asked for Yasir Gökçe’s opinion on the current developments in judicial arena in regards to Bylock. Mr. Gökçe is a legal expert who has extensive experience and knowledge on IT law, data protection and cyber security. He published several articles and reports in various peer-reviewed journals on the legality of the use of Bylock in a court of law. He conducted research and obtained a master’s degree in Harvard University. Currently, he furthers his legal studies in the Bucerius Law School.


As might be known, the 16th Chamber of the Turkish Court of Cassation pronounced on 27.03.2018 a significant judgment on how the use of the Bylock must be established beyond any doubt by the first instance courts. The Chief Prosecutor of the Court of Cassation lodged a motion of opposition against the High Court’s decision before the General Criminal Chamber of the Court of Cassation. It remains to be seen whether the highest criminal court in Turkey would uphold the decision or not.

As the team of the ‘Human rights defenders (HRDs)’, we asked for Yasir Gökçe’s opinion on the current developments in judicial arena in regards to Bylock. Mr. Gökçe is a legal expert who has extensive experience and knowledge on IT law, data protection and cyber security. He published several articles and reports in various peer-reviewed journals on the legality of the use of Bylock in a court of law. He conducted research and obtained a master’s degree in Harvard University. Currently, he furthers his legal studies in the Bucerius Law School.  

Mr. Gökçe, for those who are not familiar with the Bylock investigations, would you briefly explain what the Bylock is as well as its significance for the Turkish judiciary?

Sure. Firstly, Bylock is a secure communication app.  Turkish authorities believe that it was exclusively allocated for the members of the Gülen Movement. The current regime in Turkey declared the said group as a terrorist organization. The assumption that Bylock was merely used by the followers of the Gülen Movement is a convenient one for the regime. Thereby, the regime in Turkey can easily link anyone who allegedly use the Bylock app to the said group and convict him/her of terrorism charges.

In short, any finding which indicates that the defendant might have used Bylock is a sufficient evidence for the Turkish regime to arrest him/her for one or two years and eventually sentence the defendant to the imprisonment of 6 years and 3 month at the minimum.  

In the light of these bitter facts, what significance does the current decision of the court of cassation bear?

At the outset, I am of the opinion that the court of cassation in Turkey did not render the aforementioned decision out of the concern for the rule of law. Reports produced by the esteemed human rights organizations indicate the poor level of the independence and impartiality of the judiciary in Turkey. I would like to elaborate on various considerations underlying this sort of judicial decisions more later on.   

The current decision of the high court is of particular importance, because the decision seeks a certain quality of the evidence linking the individual with the Bylock app. According to the decision, in order to establish that an individual used the Bylock beyond any doubt, (1) there must be a Bylock report produced by MİT exclusively for the defendant, which includes information such as User ID, password etc., (2) there must be a table of log data gathered from the internet service provider of the individual in question, and lastly (3) these two records (the Bylock report and the log data table) must fully match.

In its former decision dated 24.04.2017, the 16th Chamber of the Court of Cassation (the same high court) ruled that the use of Bylock has to be established beyond any doubt using technical methods. In this decision which represents the first precedence of the Court of Cassation on Bylock, the high court has summarily confirmed the evidentiary value of Bylock in a court of law, refraining from inquiring how the Bylock metadata was gathered by MİT. The current decision still do not address the fundamental problematic aspect of the use of Bylock before a court of law: The illegality of the way the Bylock data was gathered. In an era when the Europe enacted the General Data Protection Law and bestowed the EU citizens upon very breakthrough rights related to their personal data, it appears that the Turkish authorities arbitrarily and illegally retrieved dozens of terabytes of personal metadata belonging to the Turkish citizens.

To sum up, while the first decision of the Court of Cassation puts forward the principle that the phenomenon of the use of Bylock must be proved beyond any doubt, the new decision elaborates how this phenomenon must be established by the judiciary.

What is the practical significance of the current decision? How do you think it will impact the first instance courts?

It generally takes a long time until the first instance courts internalize and implement the high courts’ decisions. Therefore, the responsibility to remind them of the new precedence falls on the lawyers/litigators.

As you know, there are thousands of victims in Turkey who are being held in jail on the basis of, borrowing the term from my article, “the Bylock fallacy.” They are either arrested or convicted on the mere ground that they used the Bylock app. The alleged use of a messaging app is literally sufficient to be convicted as a “terrorist” in today’s Turkey. Against this backdrop, to be honest, I don’t mind how or why the detained victims in Turkey are released as long as they are freed somehow, whether through a repentance law or by way of high court decisions setting forth stricter conditions. But, under the current circumstances, I regret to say that they won’t be released under an impartial and independent judicial atmosphere.

That said, I believe the first instance courts, namely peace judges and high criminal courts, would release the detainees at the earliest convenience, giving deference to the current decision.

Why do you think it takes less time, compared to their previous performance, for the first instance courts to adopt the new decision?  

Here, I would like to highlight the considerations underpinning the current decision or the likes. As far as I am concerned, the Turkish judiciary, bureaucracy and significant portion of the public are well-aware that thousands of detainees are not “terrorists” as the regime and court rulings suggest and that they are put behind bars for no reason at all. This fact generates enormous victimization which greatly hurts what is left of public conscience and translates itself into pressure directed at the Erdogan regime. As is the case for any authoritarian country, the Erdogan regime feels compelled to allow the public some breathing space and to let them blow off the steam, which otherwise would likely cause social implosions.

I believe these concerns might have forced the regime into releasing a portion of the “captives” while giving the rest the hope to be “liberated” soon. I believe that the current decisions are rendered under the instruction and direction of the regime. For instance, the Assembly of the Criminal Chambers of the Court of Cassation recognized Bylock as a lawful evidence right after the Turkish Justice Minister’s following announcement; “The Supreme Court of Appeals’ Assembly of Criminal Chambers will now finalize an appellate review [of ByLock].” 

I am putting myself into the shoes of a Turkish judge: As a judge, I would be terribly intimidated and threatened by the dismissals and subsequent arrest of 4500 judges and prosecutors. Applying the decades-long well-established principles of Turkish case-law with related to terrorism charges, I would believe deep inside that the defendants could never be arrested or convicted relying on the findings at hand, namely “Bylock, bank account, high school, newspaper subscription etc.” There is the salient example of Hakan Atilla who was convicted by a US justice for being accomplice to the Erdogan regime’s crimes. Moved by all these factors and the court of cassation, I would have adopted the decision in a prompt manner and release the Bylock victims.

Thank you for sharing your valuable comments Mr. Gökçe. Can we have your last remarks? 

As a last remark, I want to stress the following fact: MIT have reduced the number of people who downloaded Bylock from over 1 million, to 215 thousand, then to 102 thousand, and then to 91 thousand. This mere fact indicates how unreliable Bylock is as an evidence. But, Turkish judiciary insists on ignoring the aforementioned fact. Additionally, as we discuss the unreliability of the method MİT resorted to in detecting the real Bylock users, there is a danger of justifying the detention of the real users of the messaging app. In other words, the mere fact that an individual indeed downloaded or used a messaging app cannot be taken as an evidence sufficient for his/her detention or conviction of terrorism charges. In that context, the correspondence held in the Bylock metadata must be given regard. However, the Erdogan regime has so far failed to made public any correspondence of criminal nature.                  

UN Special Rapporteur calls on Turkey to guarantee a fair process for Judge Murat Arslan

Mr. Diego Garcia-Sayàn called the authorities in Turkey to guarantee a fair appeals process for award-winning senior Judge Murat Arslan, who has been convicted in violation of due process and judicial guarantees.

Special Rapporteur further mentioned the unjust case of Murat Arslan, a former Chair of the Association of Judges and Prosecutors, has been in jail since his arrest on 18 October 2016.

“The conviction of Judge Arslan constitutes a severe and gross attack on the independence of the judiciary in Turkey, and in a democratic state under the rule of law an independent and impartial judiciary is a fundamental guarantee for society as a whole,” said the UN human rights expert.

For the press release of the OHCHR (link).

Avrupa Konseyi Bakanlar Komitesi, “Adli ve idari yargılamalarda elektronik delillere dair kılavuz ilkeleri” yayınlandı

Avrupa Konseyi Bakanlar Komitesi 30 Ocak 2019’da ‘Adli ve idari yargılamalarda elektronik delillere dair kılavuz ilkeleri’ yayınladı.

ByLock yargılamalarına dair önemli ilkeler içeren eden Kılavuz ilkelerini, Erdoğan rejimi tarafından tutuklanan binlerce hukukçunun haklarını savunmak ve seslerini duyurmak için kurulan Arrested Lawyers Initiative (Tutuklu Hukukçular Girişimi) Türkçe’ye tercüme etti.

Tercüme edilen kılavuzda yer alan ve size yardımcı olacağını düşündüğümüz ilkelerin başlıkları şöyle:

  • Uzaktan ifade alma;
  • Elektronik delillerin kullanımı;
  • Delil toplanması, elde edilmesi ve iletimi;
  • İlgililik;
  • Güvenilirlik
  • Depolama ve muhafaza;
  • Arşivleme;
  • Farkındalık oluşturma, gözden geçirme, öğretim ve eğitim.


İŞTE KILAVUZ’UN TÜRKÇE TERCÜMESİ – 30 OCAK 2019

Avrupa Konseyi Bakanlar Komitesi,

Avrupa Konseyi’nin amacının, bilhassa yasal hususlara ilişkin ortak kuralların kabulünü destekleyerek, üye devletler arasında daha sağlam bir birlik oluşturmak olduğunu göz önünde bulundurarak;

Medeni ve idari dava ve işlerde mahkemelere ve yargılama yetkisini haiz diğer yetkili makamlara, hukuku meslek edinmiş kimselere ve bu dava ve işlerin taraflarına elektronik delillerin nasıl ele alınması gerektiğine ilişkin olarak işlevsel bir kılavuz ortaya koymanın gerekliliğini dikkate alarak;

Bu kılavuz ilkelerin üye devletlerin ulusal mevzuatını bağdaştırmaktan ziyade ortak bir çerçeve çizmek amacını taşıdığının bilincinde olarak;

Üye devletlerin yasal sistemlerinde görülen çeşitliliğe saygının bir gereklilik olduğunu telakki ederek;

Üye devletlerin yargı sistemlerini dijitalize etme hususunda gösterdikleri gelişmenin farkında olarak;

Yine de, yargı sistemlerinde elektronik delillerin etkili bir şekilde yönetilebilmeleri önünde yer alan ortak standartların yokluğu, delil toplama süreçlerinin çeşitliliği ve karmaşıklığı gibi engellerin farkında olduklarını bildirerek;

Yargı sistemleri içerisinde ve mahkeme sürecinde elektronik delillerin kullanımının kolaylaştırılmasına duyulan ihtiyacın altını çizerek;

Üye devletlerin günümüzde elektronik delil kullanımında ortaya çıkan aksaklıkları incelemelerine ve yeni elektronik delil prensiplerinin ve pratiklerinin ortaya konabileceği veya var olan prensip ve pratiklerin iyileştirilebileceği alanların tespitini yapmalarına ilişkin bir gerekliliğin varlığının bilincinde olarak;

Bu kılavuz ilkelerin amacının mevzuatta ve uygulamada görülen aksaklıklara yönelik elverişli çözümler sağlamak olduğunu belirterek;

Üye devletlere, medeni ve idari dava ve işlerde elektronik delillerin kullanımına ilişkin olarak ortaya çıkan problemlere cevaben üye devletlerin yargı ve diğer uyuşmazlık çözüm mekanizmaları nezdinde yürüttükleri uyum çalışmalarında onlara yardımcı olmak amacıyla ve bu çalışmalarda etkili bir araç olur düşüncesiyle aşağıda yer alan kılavuz ilkeleri kabul eder; ve üye devletleri söz konusu kılavuz ilkelerin uygulanması amacına yönelik olarak bu ilkelerin elektronik delillerden sorumlu olan, veya bu delillerin ele alınmasında görevli bulunan, şahısların aracılığıyla olabildiğince geniş bir kitleye yaymaya davet eder.

Amaç ve kapsam

Kılavuz ilkelerin konusunu;

  • uzaktan ifade alma;
  • elektronik delillerin kullanımı;
  • delil toplanması, elde edilmesi ve iletimi;
  • ilgililik;
  • güvenilirlik
  • depolama ve muhafaza;
  • arşivleme;
  • farkındalık oluşturma, gözden geçirme, öğretim ve eğitim;

hususları oluşturmaktadır.

Kılavuz ilkeler, hiçbir şekilde bu ilkeler belli tür elektronik delillerin kanıt gücünü haiz olduklarına dair bir kabul getiriyor şeklinde yorumlanmamalı ve yalnızca ulusal mevzuatla çakışmadıkları sürece uygulanmalıdırlar.

Kılavuz ilkeler yargı sistemlerinde ve mahkeme uygulamalarında elektronik delillerin kullanımını ve yönetimini kolaylaştırmayı hedeflemektedir.

Tanımlar

Bu kılavuz ilkelerin amacı doğrultusunda:

  • Elektronik delil:“Elektronik delil” işleyişi bir yazılım programına ya da bir bilgisayar sisteminde veya ağında tutulan veya bu sistem veya ağ üzerinden aktarılan veriye bağlı olan herhangi bir cihaz tarafından oluşturulan veya bu cihaz içerisinde yer alan veriden elde edilmiş her türlü delil anlamına gelmektedir.
  • Metadata:“Metadata” diğer elektronik verilere ilişkin olup delilin kimliğini, kaynağını veya tarihini belirleyebilmesinin yanında ilgili tarihlerin ve zamanların tespitini sağlayabilme potansiyeline sahip elektronik bilgi anlamına gelmektedir.
  • Güven hizmeti: Aşağıda yer alan unsurları içeren elektronik hizmet:
  1. Elektronik imzaların, elektronik mühürlerin ya da elektronik zaman damgalarının oluşturulması, doğrulanması ve geçerli kılınmaları; kayıtlı elektronik dağıtım hizmetleri ve bu hizmetlere ilişkin sertifikalar; ya da
  2. İnternet sitesi doğrulama hizmetleri için sertifika oluşturulması, bu sertifikaların doğrulanması ve geçerli kılınmaları; ya da
  3. Elektronik imzaların, mühürlerin muhafazası veya bu hizmetlere ilişkin sertifikalar
  •  Mahkeme: Yargılama yapma yetkisiyle donatılmış ve bu yetkinin icrasında elektronik delillerden faydalanan her türlü yetkili makam.

Temel prensipler

Elektronik delillerin sahip oldukları potansiyel ispat gücü ulusal mevzuat doğrultusunda mahkemeler tarafından karara bağlanır.

Elektronik deliller; bilhassa delillerin kabul edilebilirliğine, gerçekliğine, kesinliğine ve bütünlüğüne ilişkin hususlar açısından diğer delillerle aynı şekilde değerlendirilmelidir.

Elektronik deliller tarafları dezavantajlı bir konuma sokacak ya da taraflardan herhangi birine hâksiz bir avantaj sağlayacak şekilde ele alınmamalıdır.

Kılavuz ilkeler

Uzaktan ifade alma

  1. İfade alma, delilin doğasına aykırı olmamak koşuluyla, teknik araçlar kullanılarak uzaktan yapılabilir.
  2. Mahkemeler, ifade almanın uzaktan yapılıp yapılmayacağına karar verirken bilhassa aşağıda yer alan faktörleri göz önünde bulundurmalıdırlar:
  • Delilin önemi
  • İfadesi alınacak kişinin statüsü
  • Delilin aktarılacağı video bağlantısının güvenliği ve bütünlüğü
  • İfadesi alınacak kişinin mahkeme huzuruna getirilmesinin yol açacağı masraflar ve zorluklar.
  1. Uzaktan ifade almanın: a) duruşmada hazır bulunan kişilerin, duruşmanın halka açık yapıldığı durumlarda halkın, göreceği ve duyacağı şekilde ve, b) ifadesi alınacak kişide, ifadesinin etkili ve adil bir şekilde alındığına ilişkin bir şüphe oluşmasının önüne geçmek için gerekli olduğu ölçüde bu kişinin duruşmayı izleyebileceği ve duyabileceği şekilde, yapılması gerekmektedir.
  2. Uzaktan ifade alma süreci ve bu süreçte kullanılan teknolojiler bu delilin kabul edilebilirliğine ve ilgili kişilerin mahkeme tarafından kimlik tespitlerinin yapılmasına engel oluşturmamalıdırlar.
  3. İfade almanın hususi veya halka açık bir bağlantı kullanılarak yapılmasından bağımsız olarak video konferansının kalitesi sağlanmalı ve ifadenin üçüncü şahıslar tarafından dinlenmesinin önüne geçmek adına video sinyali şifrelenmelidir.

Elektronik delillerin kullanımı

  1. Mahkemeler elektronik delilleri reddetmemeli ve yalnızca elektronik bir formatta toplandıkları ve/veya sunuldukları için yasal olarak haiz olmaları gereken etkiden bu delilleri yoksun bırakmamalıdırlar.
  2. Kural olarak mahkemeler, yalnızca gelişmiş, kaliteli ve benzeri şekilde güvence altına alınmış bir elektronik imzanın yokluğunu gerekçe göstererek elektronik delilleri yasal olarak haiz olmaları gereken etkiden yoksun bırakmamalıdırlar.
  3. Mahkemeler metadatanın sahip olduğu ispat değerinin ve bu verileri kullanmamanın yol açacağı potansiyel sonuçların farkında olmalıdırlar.
  4. Taraflar elektronik delilleri, delilin çıktısı alınmış halini de tedarik etmek zorunda olmadan, orijinal elektronik formatında ibraz edebilmeliler.

Delillerin toplanması, elde edilmesi ve iletimi

  1. Elektronik delil makul ve güvenilir bir metot izlenerek toplanmalı ve bu delillerin mahkemelere ibrazı güven hizmetleri gibi güvenilir hizmetler kullanılarak sağlanmalıdır.
  2. Elektronik delillerin elektronik olmayan delillere nazaran sahip olduğu daha yüksek tahrip olma veya kaybolma riski göz önüne alındığında, üye devletler elektronik delillerin güvenilir bir şekilde elde edilmesi ve toplanmasına ilişkin olarak özel prosedürler geliştirmelidirler.
  3. Mahkemeler, elektronik delillerin yabancı ülke sınırları içerisinde elde edilmesi ve toplanmasına bağlı olarak ortaya çıkması muhtemel sorunların, sınır aşan dosyalardakiler de dahil olmak üzere, farkında olmalıdırlar.
  4. Mahkemeler sınır aşan delil toplama durumlarında birbirleriyle işbirliği içerisinde olmalıdırlar. Delil toplanmasına dair kendisine talepte bulunulan mahkeme, talepte bulunan mahkemeyi delilin hangi koşullara bağlı olarak toplanabileceği, bu bağlamda hangi kısıtlamaların da söz konusu olduğu hususunda bilgilendirmelidir.
  5. Elektronik deliller, delillerin başka mahkemelere iletilmesini kolaylaştıracak şekilde toplanmalı, düzenlenmeli ve ele alınmalıdır.
  6. Dava sürecinin daha etkin bir şekilde işleyebilmesine yardımcı olmak adına elektronik delillerin iletiminin elektronik araçlar vasıtasıyla yapılması teşvik edilmelidir.
  7. Elektronik delillerin iletiminde kullanılan sistemler ve cihazlar bu delillerin bütünlüğünü muhafaza edebilecek nitelikte olmalıdırlar.

İlgililik

  1. Mahkemeler, bilhassa elektronik delillerin gereğinden fazla ve şüpheli temininin ve bu delillere gereğinden fazla ve şüphe uyandıracak şekilde talebin oluşmasının önüne geçmek amacıyla elektronik delillerin yönetiminde aktif rol almalıdırlar.
  2. Mahkemeler, özellikle delillerin ispat gücüne ilişkin olarak ortaya atılan veya elektronik delillerle oynandığına dair bir iddianın varlığı halinde elektronik delillerin uzmanlar tarafından incelenmesini isteyebilir. Bu uzmanların ilgili konu dahilinde yeterli tecrübeye sahip olup olmadıkları mahkemeler tarafından karara bağlanmalıdır.

Güvenilirlik

  1. Delillerin güvenilirliğine ilişkin olarak mahkemeler, elektronik verilerin kaynağına ve gerçekliğine dair ilgili her türlü hususu göz önünde bulundurmalıdır.
  2. Mahkemeler güven hizmetlerinin elektronik delillere güvenin kurulması noktasında sahip oldukları değerin farkında olmalıdırlar.
  3. Ulusal yargı sisteminin izin verdiği ölçüde ve mahkemenin bu konudaki takdir yetkisini bertaraf etmeden; elektronik veriler, bu verilerin doğruluğuna ilişkin olarak taraflardan biri itiraz etmediği taktirde, delil olarak kabul edilmelidirler.
  4. Ulusal yargı sisteminin izin verdiği ölçüde ve mahkemenin bu konudaki takdir yetkisini bertaraf etmeden; imzalayan şahsın kimliğinin doğrulandığı ve verinin bütünlüğünün güvence altına alındığı durumlarda, aksine ilişkin olarak makul şüphelerin ortaya çıkmaması halinde veya bu tarz şüphelerin ortaya çıkmasına kadar elektronik verilerin güvenilir olduğu varsayılmalıdır.
  5. Uygulanacak hukukun savunmasız kişi kategorisine giren bireyler için özel koruma getirdiği durumlarda söz konusu hukuk bu kılavuz ilkeler nazarında önceliğe sahiptir.
  6. Ulusal yargı sisteminin izin verdiği ölçüde, bir kamu otoritesinin taraflardan bağımsız olarak bir elektronik delili bir yerden bir yere aktarması durumunda, söz konusu delilin içeriği aksi ispat edilene kadar kesinleşmiş kabul edilir.

Depolama ve muhafaza

  1. Elektronik deliller bunların okunabilirliğinin, ulaşılabilirliğinin, bütünlüğünün, gerçekliğinin, güvenilirliğinin ve gerekli olduğu yerde gizliliğinin ve delillerin ilgili bulundukları şahısların özel hayatlarının gizliliğinin muhafaza edilmesini sağlayacak şekilde saklanmalıdır.
  2. Elektronik deliller bunların hangi bağlamda oluşturulduğunun açık bir şekilde ortaya konmasını sağlamak adına standart hale getirilmiş metadatalarla birlikte muhafaza edilmelidir.
  3. Bilgi teknolojilerinde yaşanan gelişmeleri de göz önüne alarak, muhafaza altında bulunan elektronik delillerin zaman içerisinde okunabilirliklerini ve ulaşılabilirliklerini kaybetmelerinin önüne geçilmelidir.

Arşivleme

  1. Mahkemeler elektronik delilleri ulusal hukukun öngördüğü şekilde arşivlemelidirler. Elektronik arşivler bütün güvenlik gerekliliklerini sağlar nitelikte olmalı ve verilerin bütünlüğünü, gerçekliğini, gizliliğini, kalitesini garanti altına almalarının yanı sıra özel hayatın gizliliğine saygı prensibini de garanti etmelidirler.
  2. Elektronik delillerin arşivlenmesi işlemi nitelikli uzmanlar tarafından yürütülmelidir.
  3. Veriler elektronik delillere erişimi muhafaza etmek için gerekli olduğu taktirde yeni bir depo medyasına taşınmalıdır. 

Farkındalık oluşturma, gözden geçirme, öğretim ve eğitim

  1. Üye devletler elektronik delillerin medeni ve idari iş ve davalardaki faydalarına ve değerine ilişkin farkındalığı artırmaya yönelik çalışmalarda bulunmalıdırlar.
  2. Üye devletler elektronik delillere ilişkin olarak var olan teknik standartları denetim altında tutmalıdırlar.
  3. Mesleklerinin gereği olarak elektronik delillerle uğraşan her şahsa, bu delillerin nasıl ele alınması gerektiğine ilişkin gerekli disiplinler arası öğretime erişim imkânı sağlanmalıdır.
  4. Hakimler ve hukuku meslek edinmiş kişiler elektronik delillerin ulaşılabilirliğine ve değerine etki edebilecek bilgi teknolojilerine dair gelişmelerin farkında olmalıdırlar.
  5. Hukuk eğitiminin kapsamına elektronik cihazlara ilişkin modüller eklenmelidir.


Kaynaklar:
– https://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/committee-of-ministers-adopts-guidelines-on-electronic-evidence-in-civil-and-administrative-proceedin-1

– https://search.coe.int/cm/Pages/result_details.aspx?ObjectId=0900001680902e0c

Guidelines of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on electronic evidence in civil and administrative proceedings

(Adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 30 January 2019,
at the 1335th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies)

The Committee of Ministers,

Considering that the aim of the Council of Europe is to achieve a greater unity between the member States, in particular by promoting the adoption of common rules in legal matters;

Considering the necessity of providing practical guidance for the handling of electronic evidence in civil and administrative proceedings to courts and other competent authorities with adjudicative functions; professionals, including legal practitioners; and parties to proceedings;



Considering that these guidelines seek to provide a common framework rather than a harmonisation of the national legislation of the member States;

Considering the need to respect the diversity in the legal systems of the member States;

Acknowledging the progress made in the member States towards the digitisation of their justice systems;

Noting, nonetheless, obstacles to the effective management of electronic evidence within justice systems, such as the lack of common standards and the diversity and complexity of evidence-taking procedures;

Highlighting the need to facilitate the use of electronic evidence within legal systems and in court practices;

Recognising the need for member States to examine current deficiencies in the use of electronic evidence and to identify the areas where electronic evidence principles and practices could be introduced or improved;

Noting that the aim of these guidelines is to provide practical solutions to the existing deficiencies in law and practice,

Adopts the following guidelines to serve as a practical tool for the member States, to assist them in adapting the operation of their judicial and other dispute-resolution mechanisms to address issues arising in relation to electronic evidence in civil and administrative proceedings, and invites them to disseminate these guidelines widely with a view to their implementation by those responsible for, or otherwise handling, electronic evidence.

Purpose and scope

The guidelines deal with:

–                    oral evidence taken by a remote link;

–                    use of electronic evidence;

–                    collection, seizure and transmission of evidence;

–                    relevance;

–                    reliability;

–                    storage and preservation;

–                    archiving;

–                    awareness-raising, review, training and education.

The guidelines are not to be interpreted as prescribing a specific probative value for certain types of electronic evidence and are to be applied only insofar as they are not in conflict with national legislation.

The guidelines aim to facilitate the use and management of electronic evidence within legal systems and in court practices.

Definitions

For the purposes of these guidelines:

Electronic evidence

“Electronic evidence” means any evidence derived from data contained in or produced by any device, the functioning of which depends on a software program or data stored on or transmitted over a computer system or network.

Metadata

“Metadata” refers to electronic information about other electronic data, which may reveal the identification, origin or history of the evidence, as well as relevant dates and times.

Trust service

“Trust service” means an electronic service which consists of:

a.     the creation, verification and validation of electronic signatures, electronic seals or electronic time stamps, electronic registered delivery services and certificates related to those services; or

b.     the creation, verification and validation of certificates for website authentication; or

c.     the preservation of electronic signatures, seals or certificates related to those services.

Court

The term “court” includes any competent authority with adjudicative functions in the performance of which it handles electronic evidence.

Fundamental principles

It is for courts to decide on the potential probative value of electronic evidence in accordance with national law.

Electronic evidence should be evaluated in the same way as other types of evidence, in particular regarding its admissibility, authenticity, accuracy and integrity.

The treatment of electronic evidence should not be disadvantageous to the parties or give unfair advantage to one of them.

Guidelines

Oral evidence taken by remote link

1.            Oral evidence can be taken remotely, using technical devices, if the nature of the evidence so permits.

2.            When deciding whether oral evidence can be taken remotely, the courts should consider, in particular, the following factors:

–           the significance of the evidence;

–           the status of the person giving evidence;

–           the security and integrity of the video link through which the evidence is to be transmitted;

–           costs and difficulties of bringing the relevant person to court.

3.            When taking evidence remotely, it is necessary to ensure that:

a.    the transmission of the oral evidence can be seen and heard by those involved in the proceedings and by members of the public where the proceedings are held in public; and

b.    the person being heard from a remote location is able to see and hear the proceedings to the extent necessary to ensure that they are conducted fairly and effectively.

4.            The procedure and technologies applied to the taking of evidence from a remote location should not compromise the admissibility of such evidence and the ability of the court to establish the identity of the persons concerned.

5.            Irrespective of whether evidence is transmitted via a private or a public connection, the quality of the videoconference should be ensured and the video signal encrypted to protect against interception.

Use of electronic evidence

6.            Courts should not refuse electronic evidence and should not deny its legal effect only because it is collected and/or submitted in an electronic form.

7.            In principle, courts should not deny the legal effect of electronic evidence only because it lacks an advanced, qualified or similarly secured electronic signature.

8.            Courts should be aware of the probative value of metadata and of the potential consequences of not using it.

9.            Parties should be permitted to submit electronic evidence in its original electronic format, without the need to supply printouts.

Collection, seizure and transmission

10.          Electronic evidence should be collected in an appropriate and secure manner, and submitted to the courts using reliable services, such as trust services.

11.          Having regard to the higher risk of the potential destruction or loss of electronic evidence compared to non-electronic evidence, member States should establish procedures for the secure seizure and collection of electronic evidence.

12.          Courts should be aware of the specific issues that arise when dealing with the seizure and collection of electronic evidence abroad, including in cross-border cases.

13.          Courts should co-operate in the cross-border taking of evidence. The court receiving the request should inform the requesting court of all the conditions, including restrictions, under which evidence can be taken by the requested court.

14.          Electronic evidence should be collected, structured and managed in a manner that facilitates its transmission to other courts, in particular to an appellate court.

15.          Transmission of electronic evidence by electronic means should be encouraged and facilitated in order to improve efficiency in court proceedings.

16.          Systems and devices used for transmitting electronic evidence should be capable of maintaining its integrity.

Relevance

17.          Courts should engage in the active management of electronic evidence in order, in particular, to avoid excessive or speculative provision of, or demand for, electronic evidence.

18.          Courts may require the analysis of electronic evidence by experts, especially when complex evidentiary issues are raised or where manipulation of electronic evidence is alleged. Courts should decide whether such persons have sufficient expertise in the matter.

Reliability

19.          As regards reliability, courts should consider all relevant factors concerning the source and authenticity of the electronic evidence.

20.          Courts should be aware of the value of trust services in establishing the reliability of electronic evidence.

21.          As far as a national legal system permits, and subject to the court’s discretion, electronic data should be accepted as evidence unless the authenticity of such data is challenged by one of the parties.

22.          As far as a national legal system permits, and subject to the court’s discretion, the reliability of the electronic data should be presumed, provided that the identity of the signatory can be validated and the integrity of the data secured, unless and until there are reasonable doubts to the contrary.

23.          Where applicable law provides special protection for categories of vulnerable persons that law should have precedence over these guidelines.

24.          As far as a national legal system so provides, where a public authority transmits electronic evidence independently of the parties, such evidence is conclusive as to its content, unless and until proved to the contrary.

Storage and preservation

25.          Electronic evidence should be stored in a manner that preserves readability, accessibility, integrity, authenticity, reliability and, where applicable, confidentiality and privacy.

26.          Electronic evidence should be stored with standardised metadata so that the context of its creation is clear.

27.          The readability and accessibility of stored electronic evidence should be guaranteed over time, taking into account the evolution of information technology.

Archiving

28.          Courts should archive electronic evidence in accordance with national law. Electronic archives should meet all safety requirements and guarantee the integrity, authenticity, confidentiality and quality of the data as well as respect for privacy.

29.          The archiving of electronic evidence should be carried out by qualified specialists.

30.          Data should be migrated to new storage media when necessary in order to preserve accessibility to electronic evidence.

Awareness-raising, review, training and education

31.          Member States should promote awareness of the benefits and value of electronic evidence in civil and administrative proceedings.

32.          Member States should keep technical standards related to electronic evidence under review.

33.          All professionals dealing with electronic evidence should have access to the necessary interdisciplinary training on how to handle such evidence.

34.          Judges and legal practitioners should be aware of the evolution of information technologies which may affect the availability and value of electronic evidence.

35.          Legal education should include modules on electronic evidence.



Sources:
– https://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/committee-of-ministers-adopts-guidelines-on-electronic-evidence-in-civil-and-administrative-proceedin-1

– https://search.coe.int/cm/Pages/result_details.aspx?ObjectId=0900001680902e0c

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