Women and Justice: Court: Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic

International Case Law

Slovak Republic, Supreme Court, Decision No. 36/2005, File No. 2 Cdo 67/03 Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic (2005)

Gender discrimination

Ms X.Y. (the claimant) had worked as a nurse in the Hospital in the city of Velký Krtíš (the employer) since November 30, 1998.  On April 11, 2002, the claimant received a notice of the termination of her employment due to her failure to take an oath in accordance with new legislation.  The new legislation came into force on April 1, 2002, when the claimant was on maternity leave.  The notification of the new legal prerequisite was posted in the halls of the hospital making it almost impossible for workers on maternity leave to be informed.  The claimant sued the employer for unlawful termination of employment, arguing that the termination was discriminatory on the grounds of her gender.  The district court ruled in favor of the claimant; however, on appeal the regional court quashed the decision and dismissed the case.  The claimant appealed to the Supreme Court which held that the termination was unlawful for a number of reasons.  Firstly, the employer failed to perform its legal obligations to enable the claimant to take the oath. Secondly, the acts of the employer with respect to the termination of employment were discriminatory.  The employer had disadvantaged a certain group of its employees, in particular those on maternity leave, by failing to provide them with notice about the new requirement to take the oath, breaching the prohibition of discrimination established in labor relations.  This was in breach of the prohibition of discrimination under Section 13 of the Labor Code of the Slovak Republic.  Lastly, the Supreme Court held that the employer had abused its rights as an employer, which is in violation of moral principals.  The Supreme Court further held that the termination would have been lawful if the employer had duly informed the claimant about the new regulations and provided her with a chance to comply with them, and ordered a re-examination of the issue by the district court.

Slovak Republic, Supreme Court, Decision No. 113/1999, File No. 3 To 61/98 Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic (1998)

Sexual violence and rape, Trafficking in persons

In the summer of 1995, Mr. P.Š. and Mr. K.P. (the defendants) transported juvenile Ms. Š.N. and juvenile Ms. A.G. (the Aggrieved) to Prague under the guise of providing employment.  The defendants intended to sell the Aggrieved to R.R. into prostitution. After examining the Aggrieved primarily on the basis of their moral standing and their relationship with the defendants, the district court acquitted both defendants. Subsequently, the Prosecutor appealed the decision to the Supreme Court.  The Supreme Court quashed the decision of the district court and found the defendants guilty of trafficking in women.  It further held that an examination of the moral standing and the relationship of the Aggrieved to the defendants was unreasonable.  The Supreme Court clarified that the criminal act of trafficking in women is committed if a woman is lured (i.e., by promises, offers of money, etc.), hired (conclusion of any agreement, including illegal agreements about the trafficking of women to another country), or transported to another country (crossing of a border being sufficient, the specifics of the actual location not required) for the purpose of prostitution.  It is irrelevant whether the women in question actually worked as prostitutes or not, the intention to work as a prostitute is sufficient.  The Supreme Court ordered the district court to re-examine the case.

Slovak Republic, Supreme Court, Decision No. 6/1984, File No. 3 To 3/28 Supreme Court of the Slovak Republic (1984)

Sexual violence and rape

Ms. L.G. (the Aggrieved) a mentally disabled female, under the age of 15, was forced into sexual intercourse with A.G. (the defendant).  The district court found the defendant guilty of attempted rape, even though the defendant had confessed to a number of facts during the police investigation and the trial including knowledge of the fact that the Aggrieved was under the age of 15 and the fact that he took advantage of the Aggrieved party’s mental condition and fully knowing that she would not resist, proceeded to rape her.  The district court´s decision relied on the testimony of an expert witness who examined the condition of Ms. L.G., and concluded that no sexual intercourse had occurred due to the undamaged status of the hymen. The Prosecutor appealed the decision to the Supreme Court, which quashed the decision of the district court and found the defendant guilty of rape.  The defendant had exploited the vulnerable nature of Ms. L.G., and the fact that she was under the age of 15.  The defendant also knew that Ms. L.G. would not resist him, as a result of her mental state, as evidenced by submissions from a number of experts.  The decision did not consider the status of the claimant’s hymen, since the defendant´s penetration was proven.  The Supreme Court sentenced the defendant to 8 years in a correctional facility.