2007/2155(IMM)

Request for defence of the parliamentary immunity of Claudio Fava

Procedure completed

2007/2155(IMM) Request for defence of the parliamentary immunity of Claudio Fava
RoleCommitteeRapporteurShadows
Lead JURI LEHNE Klaus-Heiner (PPE-DE)
Lead committee dossier: JURI/6/50657
Legal Basis RoP 006
Subjects
Links

Activites

Documents

History

(these mark the time of scraping, not the official date of the change)

2012-02-09
activities added
  • date
    2007-06-06
    body
    EP
    type
    Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
    committees
    • body
      EP
      responsible
      True
      committee
      JURI
      date
      2007-06-18
      committee_full
      Legal Affairs
      rapporteur
      • group
        PPE-DE
        name
        LEHNE Klaus-Heiner
  • date
    2007-12-20
    docs
    • type
      Committee draft report
      title
      PE398.708
    body
    EP
    type
    Committee draft report
  • date
    2008-01-21
    text
    • The Committee on Legal Affairs adopted by unanimity the report drafted by Mr. Klaus-Heiner LEHNE (EPP-ED, DE), whereby it decided to defend the immunity of the Italian Member, Mr. Claudio FAVA (PES, IT).

      To recap, Mr Fava, at the sitting of 6 June 2007, requested the defence of his parliamentary immunity in relation to civil proceedings brought against him and pending before the Civil Court of Marsala (Sicily) since 29 May 2007. The proceedings in question were brought by Mr David Salvatore Costa against Mr Fava, along with other defendants, to answer to a claim for them to be ordered to pay, jointly and severally or individually, such amount as the Court should consider just as compensation for statements they made on 16 November 2006 during the TV programme 'Annozero', broadcast by the State television channel RAI 2, which, that evening, was devoted to Sicily. Among the guests on the programme were the President of the Region, Mr Salvatore Cuffaro, and Mr Fava.

      According to Mr Costa's writ of summons, in the final part of the programme, Mr Fava, after violently hurling abuse at Mr Cuffaro, in a theatrical tone, wildly launched slanderous and defamatory accusations against Mr Costa, who was, moreover, not present during the debate. Mr Fava allegedly insinuated that Mr Costa, advisor to Mr Cuffaro, had gone out, and with the assistance of the local mafia, was seeking votes during the election campaign in Sicily.

      The Committee on Legal Affairs, having examined the case, came to the view that Mr Fava is engaged in these civil proceedings for having expressed his opinions in the exercise of his duties, and that Articles 9 and 10 of the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities of the European Communities of 8 April 1965 can be invoked to defend his immunity. As a matter of fact, in his statements reported by the writ of summons filed by the claimant, Mr Fava merely commented on facts in the public domain. In describing and criticising what, in his views, were deviations in the electoral campaign in Sicily, he was carrying out his duty as a Member of Parliament in expressing his opinion on a matter of public interest to his constituents. In short, in the committee's view, Mr FAVA was simply doing his job as a Member of Parliament. To seek to gag Members of Parliament from expressing their opinions on matters of legitimate public interest and concern by bringing legal proceedings is unacceptable in a democratic society and manifestly in breach of Article 9 of the Protocol, which is intended to protect Members' freedom of expression in the performance of their duties in the interests of Parliament as an Institution.

      On the legal form, the committee opted for a broad interpretation of the term 'legal proceedings' used in Articles 9 and 10 of the Protocol on the Privileges and Immunities of the European Communities. In fact, traditionally, this expression had been interpreted as covering only criminal proceedings. However, on 23 September 2003 Parliament decided, for the first time, to uphold the immunity of a Member in civil proceedings Subsequently, many other similar decisions were taken in other cases involving civil proceedings. Accordingly, the reference to 'legal proceedings' is now interpreted as covering any attempt to secure punitive damages by means of civil proceedings.

      On the basis of the above considerations, the Committee on Legal Affairs, having examined the reasons for and against defending immunity, recommends that the immunity of Mr Claudio Fava should be defended.

    body
    EP
    committees
    • body
      EP
      responsible
      True
      committee
      JURI
      date
      2007-06-18
      committee_full
      Legal Affairs
      rapporteur
      • group
        PPE-DE
        name
        LEHNE Klaus-Heiner
    type
    Vote in committee, 1st reading/single reading
  • date
    2008-01-24
    docs
    • url
      http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A6-2008-0007&language=EN
      type
      Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
      title
      A6-0007/2008
    body
    type
    Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
  • date
    2008-01-24
    docs
    • url
      http://www.europarl.europa.eu/sides/getDoc.do?type=REPORT&mode=XML&reference=A6-2008-0007&language=EN
      type
      Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
      title
      A6-0007/2008
    body
    EP
    type
    Committee report tabled for plenary, single reading
  • date
    2008-02-19
    docs
    body
    EP
    type
    Text adopted by Parliament, single reading
  • date
    2008-02-19
    docs
    • url
      http://www.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/spdoc.do?i=14601&j=0&l=en
      type
      Commission response to text adopted in plenary
      title
      SP(2008)1767
    body
    EC
    commission
      type
      Commission response to text adopted in plenary
    committees added
    • body
      EP
      responsible
      True
      committee
      JURI
      date
      2007-06-18
      committee_full
      Legal Affairs
      rapporteur
      • group
        PPE-DE
        name
        LEHNE Klaus-Heiner
    links added
    other added
      procedure added
      dossier_of_the_committee
      JURI/6/50657
      reference
      2007/2155(IMM)
      title
      Request for defence of the parliamentary immunity of Claudio Fava
      legal_basis
      • Rules of Procedure of the European Parliament EP 006
      stage_reached
      Procedure completed
      subtype
      Waiver of immunity
      type
      IMM - Members' immunity
      subject
      • 8.40.01.03 Members' immunity

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