According to the International Court of Justice (IRK) of the Amsterdam District Court, Polish courts can no longer be regarded as independent from the Polish government. The IRK therefore refuses to hand over a Polish man.
The IRK, which decides on the surrender of suspects and convicts to other European countries, states that the man suspected of drug trafficking cannot be guaranteed a fair trial in his home country.
This decision may have consequences for the transfer of suspects to Poland from the Netherlands. That is why the IRK of the Court of Justice of the European Union wants to know whether a surrender to an EU Member State should indeed be refused if courts in that country can no longer function independently.
According to the IRK, this is the first time that the Court has been asked these questions.
Polish justice has been controversial for some time
The judiciary in Poland has been controversial for some time. According to the IRK, there is, among other things, political interference in the appointments and transfers of (vice) presidents to judicial authorities and judges.
In April of this year, the Court of Justice of the European Union tapped on the Polish government because disciplinary chambers were set up to test court decisions and punish judges for them.
These disciplinary chambers consist of persons who are indirectly elected politically. According to the Court of Justice, therefore, the activity of these chambers had to be suspended, otherwise a penalty would be imposed. It is not clear whether Poland has taken action on this.