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Beljanski v. France, February 2002.
 
The text of this case can be found on the European Court of Human Rights' HUDOC database.

Facts / Allegations: The applicant, a French national, complained, relying on Article 6(1), about the length of the judicial investigation (which lasted approximately six years) into his involvement in the development of a controversial anti-AIDS drug, PB 100.

Holding: The Court held unanimously that there had been a violation of Article 6(1) and awarded the applicant's widow EUR 4,500 for non-pecuniary damage and EUR 6,000 for costs and expenses.

Reasoning: when assessing whether the length of criminal proceedings is reasonable in light of the European Convention, the Court automatically considers the particular circumstances of the case and the criteria laid down in the Court's case law: the complexity of the case, the conduct of the Applicant and the judicial and administrative authorities and finally, what is at stake for the Applicant. The Court considered the age and the critical health condition of the applicant, observed that the stake of the present case for him, namely his reputation and the seriousness of his scientific research, was significant. Accordingly, the Court ruled that the length of the criminal proceedings in this case was excessive.

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