Transport: truck driver has to take responsibility of a theft of goods for not watching Supreme Court’s interpretation on the liability of carriers in the International Transport Convention

Supreme Court has ruled the liability of the carrier in the terms of articles 19, 17.2 and 23 of the Convention on May 19 of 1956 concerning about the contract for International Carriage by road (CMR). In the initial civil lawsuit, the insurance company claimed the responsibility of the last charge carrier who intervened in the good’s transport when the theft took place.

The Supreme Court in its judgment No. 399/2015 has transferred the matter to the interpretation of articles 57 and 62 of the Spanish Law 15/2009, about the contract of carriage of goods by land that faithfully reflects the content of the CMR. The case was about the liability of the truck driver in the theft of goods while he was stationed. Until now case-law has been controversial, but this judgment of the High Court sets a Court precedent.

The novelty of this pronouncement focuses on that the Court base its argument on the concurrency of intention in the CMR Convention terms. They understood intention in the terms of the art. 62 of Law 15/2009. So, it is not the intention or malice as a aggravation of the responsibility, but «as a logical consequence or necessary for the infringement of a legal duty consciously committed, without need of animus or intent to harm».

Therefore, Supreme Court rules the liability of the carrier because it violated its duty of custody of the load. The Court argues that he parked in a dangerous spot without protection, so we can understand that action as malice.

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