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RPO’s motion to the Constitutional Tribunal to conduct a constitutional review of the laws governing the use of technical measures as part of investigative techniques

The Human Rights Defender (RPO) filed motion with the Constitutional Tribunal (TK) to conduct a constitutional review of the laws governing the use of technical measures as part of investigative techniques used by law enforcement agencies. The RPO cites the HFHR’s statement on the matter.

The Foundation’s opinion is that inaccuracy of the provisions governing the use of technical measures as part of investigative techniques leads to situations where law enforcement agencies may apply virtually any technical measures, such as GPS.

The Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights believes that Polish laws fail to guarantee sufficient protection of the rights of an individual subject to an investigation involving the use of surveillance techniques. In the Foundation’s opinion, the application of penal measures described in vaguely-worded regulations may, above all, constitute an unjustified interference with the individual’s right to privacy enshrined in Article 47 of the Polish Constitution. Likewise, the RPO argues that an analysis of the relevant applicable laws must lead to a conclusion that they are inconsistent with the constitutional norm of protecting the right to privacy.

In the RPO’s opinion, the laws indicated in the motion do not comply with the requirement of accuracy expected of the legislators. The RPO stated: ‘Obviously, investigative measures must be used in secrecy, specifically with respect to persons to whom the said measures are applied. However, it is this very secrecy that burdens the legislators with a duty to maintain a particular accuracy and explicitness of the laws specifying the limits of interference, its form and shape as well as procedures under which such methods may be employed.’

Nowadays, legally permissible investigative techniques comprise any technical measures enabling the secret acquisition of information and evidence, as well as recording of the same. The laws are silent on what type of information and evidence can be acquired.


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