Statement on judge Beata Morawiec

The judicial immunity of Polish judge Beata Morawiec was lifted by the Discipinary Chamber of the Supreme Court of Poland. This is a blatant violation of the interim measures issued by the European Court of Justice. Judges for Judges calls for immediate action from the European Commission.

On Monday 12 October 2020 the Disciplinary Chamber of the Polish Supreme Court lifted the judicial immunity of Beata Morawiec, judge of the District Court in Kraków and chair of Polish Judges Association Themis. She was suspended and a 50% salary cut was imposed. Judge Morawiec may now be criminally prosecuted.

The hearing by the Disciplinary Chamber and the same day decision waiving the immunity of judge Morawiec are both in direct and blatant violation with the European Court of Justice order of 08.04.2020. The ECJ then issued interim measures in case C-791/19 R, ordering the Disciplinary Chamber of the Polish Supreme Court to suspend its activities concerning Polish judges and to cease hearing disciplinary procedures against judges, while the proceedings as to whether it is an independent body complying with the requirements of EU law are pending.

This calls for immediate action from the European institutions, mainly the European Commission, within its role of guardian of the Treaties, on the basis of art. 260 (2) TFEU. The Disciplinary Chamber should be prevented from proceeding with any activities until the final decision of proceedings in Case C 791/19. As long as the Disciplinary Chamber continues to operate, serious (irreparable) damage to Polish judges is done and the chilling effect on the Polish judiciary is even further increased.

Judges for Judges expresses its support and solidarity to judge Beata Morawiec and to all independent Polish judges.

Click here to download this statement in pdf format.