United Nations

Convention against Torture
and Other Cruel, Inhuman
or Degrading Treatment
or Punishment

Distr.: General
19 December 2017
Original: English

Committee against Torture

Decision adopted by the Committee under article 22 of the
Convention, concerning communication No. 672/2015*, **
Communication submitted by:

John Alfred Vogel (represented by counsel, Tony

Alleged victim:

The complainant

State party:

New Zealand

Date of complaint:

5 January 2015

Date of decision:

14 November 2017

Subject matter:

Solitary confinement

Procedural issue:

State party’s reservation to article 14

Substantive issues:

Cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or
punishment; right to fair and adequate

Articles of the Convention:

14 and 16

The complainant is John Alfred Vogel, a national of New Zealand born in 1965. He
claims that the prolonged solitary confinement to which he was subjected and the denial of
his right to adequate compensation therefor constitute a violation by New Zealand of
articles 14 and 16 of the Convention. The complainant is represented by counsel.
Upon ratification of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or
Degrading Treatment or Punishment on 10 December 1989, the State party entered a
reservation to article 14. The reservation states that the Government of New Zealand
reserves the right to award compensation to torture victims at the sole discretion of the
Attorney General of New Zealand.
The facts as presented by the complainant
On 26 February 1998, the complainant was sentenced to life imprisonment after
having been found guilty of murder. After serving 10 years of the sentence, he was released
on parole on 4 May 1998. In January 2000, however, he was recalled to prison after having
been convicted on further charges.1

* Adopted by the Committee at its sixty-second session (6 November–6 December 2017).
** The following members of the Committee participated in the examination of the communication:

Essadia Belmir, Alessio Bruni, Felice Gaer, Abdelwahab Hani, Claude Heller Rouassant, Jens
Modvig, Ana Racu, Sébastien Touzé and Kening Zhang.
See High Court of New Zealand, John Alfred Vogel v. the Attorney-General, judgment of 24 February



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