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Porter-Harris v United Kingdom (decision), 1 July 1992 [ECtHR]

Case no 18828/91

The applicant was sentenced on 30 June 1978 to a term of discretionary life imprisonment for offences relating to possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life. He was described by the court as being of a "psychopathic disorder" with an "explosive temper".

The applicant was released on licence on 6 July 1990. Conditions are attached to the licence which is of indefinite duration, inter alia, that he may only reside and work where approved by his probation officer and that he may not leave the country without the approval of his probation officer. (...)

2. The applicant also complains that the life licence interferes with his rights under Articles 8 and 11 (Art. 8, 11) of the Convention, (...)

The Commission recalls that the licence imposes on the applicant a number of conditions which potentially restrict his movements. The Commission notes however that the applicant has not complained of any specific prejudicial effect caused by the operation of the life licence in his case. He has not indicated that his probation officer has unreasonably or arbitrarily supervised the conditions imposed under the life licence. The Commission considers that, assuming the existence of the life licence constitutes an interference under the above provisions, such interference may be justified for the purpose of the prevention of crime and disorder. The measure has also not been shown to be disproportionate bearing in mind that the applicant was sentenced to life imprisonment for serious offences and considered to be psychopathic.

The Commission accordingly finds that there is no indication of a violation of Articles 8 and 11 (Art. 8,  11) of the Convention on the facts of this case.

It follows that these complaints are manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 27 para. 2 (Art. 27-2) of the Convention.

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