Judgment No. 4050
The complaint is dismissed.
The complainant challenges the decision to impose on him the disciplinary sanction of relegation in step.
misconduct; disciplinary measure
As the written submissions are sufficient for the Tribunal to reach a reasoned decision, the request for oral proceedings is rejected.
The claims of breach of due process are unfounded.
[...] (b) The complainant claims that he should have had 15 days to respond to the new allegation of misconduct regarding the charge of breach of confidentiality, as it was not included in the Article 100 report. In a similar situation the Tribunal concluded as follows: “The Tribunal notes that the Disciplinary Committee addressed this issue explicitly in the proceedings and in its final report. The Disciplinary Committee has the prerogative to immediately address something which occurs during the proceedings, in the interest of procedural efficiency. As the complainant was given the opportunity to comment on the alleged breach of confidentiality, the principle of due process was respected. The complainant had adequate time to prepare his defence.” (See Judgment 3971, under 15.) These conclusions are applicable to the present case.
Jugement(s) TAOIT: 3971
due process; disciplinary procedure
The complainant claims that his actions did not cause any identifiable prejudice. The Tribunal observes that the complainant obstructed the proper functioning of the system of internal remedies by his unjustified absence from the July session, his undermining of the Chairperson’s authority to take organizational decisions and his refusal to finalize the cases assigned to him which had been pending prior to the July session before leaving the IAC. The complainant does not acknowledge the negative impact of his uncooperative behaviour on the functioning of the IAC, which consequently adversely affected the interests of the other members of the IAC.
The Tribunal finds that in [his] decisions [...] the President properly motivated his reasoning for deviating from the Disciplinary Committee’s recommendation of the sanction of relegation in step by one step. Furthermore, the [...] mitigating factors identified by the complainant are unconvincing. [T]he provisions were lawful, his absence was unjustified, his behaviour was intentional, and furthermore, his willingness to attend the September session was conditional. Taken as a whole, the complainant’s behaviour constituted misconduct, which was aggravated by the fact that he was an IAC member who would be expected to have a high level of respect for the rules, for confidentiality, and for the proper functioning of the appeal system. [T]he President maintained the sanction proposed by the Disciplinary Committee (relegation in step), but after considering the severity of the misconduct, he concluded that relegation by three steps was justified. The Tribunal considers the contested sanction not to be disproportionate in light of the above considerations.
proportionality; disciplinary measure; disciplinary procedure