CJEU Advocate General delivers opinion on subsequent use of telecommunications-related personal data


On 30 March 2023, Advocate General Campos Sánchez-Bordona issued his opinion in Case C‑162/22 (Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania – subsequent use of telecommunications-related personal data initially obtained in a criminal investigation), pending before the Court of Justice of the European Union.

In a nutshell, the Advocate General concluded that:

  • Article 15 (1) of the ePrivacy Directive must be interpreted as meaning that it does not allow the competent public authorities:
    • to collect data retained by providers of electronic communications services that may provide detailed information about a user
    • to use such data in investigations into conduct constituting less serious offenses than the offenses whose investigation may have justified the access to those data;
  • Article 9 (1) of the Law Enforcement Directive (EU Directive 2016/680) read in conjunction with Articles 6 and 10 of the GDPR, must be interpreted as not precluding the use, in administrative proceedings of a disciplinary nature, of personal data lawfully and directly obtained by public authorities in a criminal investigation, provided that:
    • in accordance with clear, precise, and binding rules of national law, the administrative proceedings and the criminal investigation are linked
    • in so far as the use of the data pursues a legitimate aim and is necessary and proportionate – a matter that is for the referring court to determine.

A press release is not yet available, but the full opinion is available here.

Following this opinion, we now expect the Court’s decision.