In determining whether the charges should be
considered "criminal" for the purposes of Article 6 regard was had to the three
criteria adopted in Engel v Netherlands  1 EHRR 647 as applied in
the prison context in Campbell and Fell v United Kingdom  7 EHRR
(1) whether the provisions defining the offence charged belonged in domestic
law, to criminal law or disciplinary law or both – this is no more than a
(2) the nature of the offence – a factor of greater import,
(3) the degree of severity of the penalty – there belongs to the "criminal"
sphere deprivations of liberty liable to be imposed as a punishment, except
those which by their nature, duration or manner of execution cannot be
The second and third criteria are alternatives and not necessarily cumulative
but that does not exclude a cumulative approach where the separate analysis of
each criteria does not make it possible to reach a clear conclusion as to the
existence of a "criminal charge" (paragraph 86).