Statement of the Polish Business Roundtable on the abuse of the pre-trial detention

The Polish Business Roundtable strongly condemns recent abuses of the pre-trial detention. A glaring example of this practice is the arrest of Piotr Osiecki, former CEO of TFI Altus S.A. and our association’s member.

Sadly, we note that the case of Piotr Osiecki is not an isolated incident. In fact, it is a manifestation of a growing tendency to make unjustified arrests of individuals, who in no way shun cooperation with the law enforcement authorities and do not seek to obstruct justice.

Arrest, which should be a last resort, becomes a tool used in Poland without need and moderation, and above all without taking into consideration its personal, social, and economic consequences. Before any verdict, not only Piotr Osiecki and his family but also employees and investors of Altus TFI, its managed funds, and portfolio companies were severely punished.

For years, Poland has been losing cases concerning unjustified and prolonged pre-trial detentions before the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights. Between 2007 and 2014, the average length of detention began to decrease. Unfortunately, since 2015 a reverse trend has been noted: in 2015–2017, the number of requests for pre-trial detention increased by over 40%, and the duration of pre-trial detention also became longer, in district courts reaching 14.4 months on average. This means that people, who have been deprived of their fundamental right to the presumption of innocence, remain behind bars for many months, or even years.

>>>Read the full statement [in Polish]

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