8 févr. 2015

“Death words” of the plaintiff killing his tax case, Cañada Mora v Spain, 2070/2011

Spanish wine producer José Antonio Cañada Mora was attacked by tax authorities imposing on him a tax debt of € 481 154 for periods from 1992 to 1996 (§ 2.1). There were chances to avoid loosing the money, since the debts for 1992 and 1993 had expired pursuant to the legal statute of limitations, and a substantial part of evidence, i.e. copies not supported by originals, filed by tax authorities had been declared inadmissible (§ 2.2).

On 14/03/2005 Cañada Mora filed an application for amparo (legal protection) before the Spanish Constitutional Court, however his case was still pending before the lower Supreme Court. On 01/04/2005 the Supreme Court dismissed the cassation, since its value taken separately for each quarter was less than € 150 258 (§ 2.8).

On 25/04/2005 Cañada Mora second time applied for amparo before the Constitutional Court, and the application contained the words that he “reiterate[d] the application for amparo that was lodged on 14/03/2005” (§ 2.9).

These words became death words. The Constitutional Court merged the second application with the first one, took into consideration the date of 14/03/2005, and on that ground declared it inadmissible (proceedings still pending before a lower court, § 2.10).

The European Court of Human Rights supported the Spanish judges (§ 2.11), and Cañada Mora appealed before the UN Human Rights Committee.

The UN Committee answered that it does not follow from the death words that the purpose of Cañada Mora was to submit a second request for amparo separate from 14/03/2005 (§ 4.3).

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