Turkey high court gives a chance for ‘rehabilitation’
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
DAILY NEWS photoTurkey’s Constitutional Court has scrapped a legal provision that had allowed the indefinite confiscation of the driving licenses of people who get behind the wheel after taking drugs or impairing substances.
In the ruling, published in the Official Gazette on the weekend, the court said the penalty, part of the Road Traffic Law, was disproportionate and violated basic legal principles.
The provision is intended to protect public order, but it fails to comply with the principle of equity because, unlike other arrangements envisaging the seizure of driving licenses, it does not refer to any measures of testing and medical treatment and does not include any criteria on whether the person in question has lost his or her ability to drive safely, the ruling said.
It also said the provision did not allow for the return of the driving license if the sanctioned person undergoes treatment, thus flouting a basic principle of the law, that “the essential objective of penalties is to ensure that the perpetrator is rehabilitated and integrated back into society.”
The court decided that the abolition of the provision would take effect in six months to allow time for Parliament to pass an amendment.