ADVOCATE GENERAL CRITICISES GENERAL COURT FOR OVER-RELYING ON PRESUMPTIONS: ANBOUBA

Advocate General Bot handed down his opinion today (8 January 2015) in Syrian sanctions appeal C-605/13 P and C-630/13 P Issam Anbouba v Council (available here in French).

The opinion contains an interesting analysis of the case law of the European court on presumptions.  Advocate General Bot summarises the Court of Justice’s judgements in Tay Za, Kadi II and Kala Naft as requiring the Council to discharge its burden of proving the facts justifying a listing in an EU sanctions measure on a sufficiently solid factual basis, and that the application of a presumption may or not be significant depending on the context.  He criticised the General Court (the court below) for relying only on a presumption that Mr Anbouba, as a successful businessman in Syria, supports the Assad regime (the relevant criterion for inclusion in the EU’s Syria sanctions), but considered that on the facts the Council had discharged its burden of proof, given the undisputed facts in the case.

Advocate General’s opinions do not bind the Court of Justice (the ECJ notably did not follow AG Bot’s opinion in Kadi II  – see previous blog).  The next stage of the case will be the ECJ’s judgment.

This entry was posted in European Court Cases, Syria by Maya Lester QC. Bookmark the permalink.

About Maya Lester QC

Maya Lester QC has a wide ranging practice in public law, European law, competition law, international law, human rights & civil liberties. She has a particular expertise in sanctions. As the most recent (2016) Chambers & Partners directory put it, she "owns the world of sanctions". She spent 2011-12 in New York at Columbia Law School lecturing and writing on sanctions. She represents and advises hundreds of companies and individuals before the European and English courts and has acted in most of the leading cases, including Kadi, Tay Za, Central Bank of Iran, NITC and IRISL.

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