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(en) France, OCL CA #336 - Case of December 8: an unfair but not surprising judgment (ca, de, fr, it, pt, tr)[machine translation]

Date Thu, 8 Feb 2024 08:13:53 +0200

This report follows the article on the opening of the trial (CA No. 334) and that on the progress (CA No. 335)(1). From the first article, I noted that the president of the court took up the position of the prosecution and the DGSI investigation (2) "without any distancing". I concluded the second by noting that throughout the trial she had continued to follow the positions of the PNAT (3). The judgment was confirmation of this. ---- On December 22, from 8:30 a.m., small groups of parents, friends and supporters from different regions gather on the square in front of the Paris court to attend at 10 a.m. the judgment against those accused of the affair of December 8, 2020. Despite the wind and the drizzle, the group increases; the atmosphere is warm although worried about the fate reserved for them. Time to pass the three successive checks and searches, we gradually enter one of the largest courtrooms. There are 250 of us crowded on the benches, and there are still around fifty people left in the halls and on the square.

Three-quarters of an hour late, the court finally settles in all its shabby splendor and the president begins to announce her decisions. She first responds to the various requests from the lawyers whose response she had rejected. On the request for communication of the video recordings of the police custody: she claims that she would possibly have authorized them if the lawyers had contested the hearing minutes, but as they had not made a formal challenge, it was useless. How could the lawyers have challenged them without being able to observe questionable elements thanks to this viewing? The lawyers had requested a hearing from the (anonymized) DGSI investigators. The judge considered that the result of their investigation was sufficient and that there was therefore no need to bring them to trial. Same story for a request related to the documents used in the expertise on explosives.
Already this introduction smelled very bad. Then the president stated all the reasons why they (4) had retained the qualification of Association of Terrorist Criminals (5): it is not necessary that there be a structured association, nor that all the members know each other , nor that there are precise short-term objectives. You just have to take into account the fact that they met, that certain recordings indicate that they don't like the police at all, that they trained militaryly (a game of airsoft!), that they have made explosives (large firecracker) or have possessed products allowing them to be made, some have weapons (mostly legal)...

As this enumeration progresses, we see clearly where she is coming from and protests emanate from the ranks of the public. After two or three interruptions in her reading, the president asks to evacuate the room. She leaves as well as the two assessors, the clerk and the public prosecutor. The police officers who were present from the start of the session on the sides of the room position themselves between the area intended for the defendants and their lawyers and that reserved for the magistrates. After a short waiting time, other cops will complete the encirclement system.
Without worrying too much about their presence and their requests to go out, we then begin a sort of improvised AGM where different practical positions are proposed which all mark a disruptive attitude towards justice: all go out to show that as they do not want hear nothing, we don't want to listen to them either, all of you stay to impose a physical evacuation by the cops and denounce it. Ultimately the vast majority of the public preferred to go out singing "Down with the police state (6)". After a period of refusal by the president to discuss with the lawyers, an agreement was reached so that the judgment would be pronounced in front of the accused and their lawyers, three members of each family, the few representatives of the press .

As expected after this introduction, the convictions follow requests from the PNAT. They range from 2 years with a simple suspended sentence without registration with FIJAIT (7) for the least charged of the accused, up to 5 years including 30 months with a suspended sentence for Florian "Libre Flot". They even aggravate the requests of the prosecution on certain points: the execution of the remaining sentences of less than one year will necessarily be carried out using an electronic bracelet; the convicted are prohibited from communicating with each other for 3 years. The length of sentences is slightly reduced for the main accused, but increased for Camille who has shown herself to be the most politically determined to challenge justice.

Obviously, everyone was dismayed by this result, but remained determined to continue the legal fight. It is still too early to have confirmation of the attitude of the convicted persons and their lawyers, but they declared before the hearing that if there was a conviction in the name of the AMT and therefore registration with the FIJAIT, the appeal would be certain. In addition, a lawyer told us that the fact that the judges were more severe than the prosecution is quite rare and that in these cases, it is very unlikely that on appeal the sentences will be increased again. Then, if the appeal does not suspend the judicial control measures linked to the suspended parts of the convictions, it is suspensive of the sentences (and therefore of the placement under bracelet). Finally, this lawyer estimated that the waiting time for a call in Paris is currently 1 and a half to 2 years.
By 2025 they will still need our solidarity, in particular financial support (8) for their defense.

AD, Limoges 12/23/2023

1: There were a few small flaws in the presentation of the notes in the first article, but in the second, they all disappeared. We will try to reestablish some points here.
2: General Directorate of Internal Security
3: National anti-terrorist prosecution
4: the three judges are women.
5: For a critique of the AMT, refer to an excellent article published in the journal Délibabilité and available here: https://www.cairn.info/revue-delibe...
6: Modernized version of the song by Dominique Grange
7: Judicial file for perpetrators of terrorist offenses which includes numerous constraints (home, work, travel) and can possibly be extended beyond the initial 10 years.
8: https://www.cotizup.com/soutien-8-12

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