London, Jan 14 (ANI): Three sex offenders in Germany have been awarded 105,000 pounds in damages by the European Court of Human Rights after they were kept in prison for an indefinite period.
The three, convicted on rape and assault charges, including one for sexually abusing a minor, had been held under Germany's preventive detention system, which allows prisoners considered dangerous to be detained for an indefinite period.
But Rudiger Kallweit, Manuel Mautes and Martin Schummer, had all been convicted before a 1998 change to the law that lifted a 10-year limit on preventive detention.
They filed complaints to the court after their detentions were extended beyond 10 years based on psychological and neurological tests that found they were likely to recommit crimes if released.
The rights court ruled that since their convictions dated from before the 1998 change to the law, they could not be held beyond the original 10-year maximum.
"Without the amendment of the Criminal Code in 1998 the courts responsible for the execution of the sentences would not have had jurisdiction to extend the duration of the detention," the Telegraph quoted the court as saying in its ruling.
"The extension of the detention was therefore a violation of the plaintiffs' 'right to liberty and security'," the court added. (ANI)