defense lawyers criticize the November 13 trial - THECHOWANIECS.COM

defense lawyers criticize the November 13 trial

Police officers patrol on September 8, 2021 in Paris in front of the special courtroom set up for the trial of the November 13 attacks (photo illustration) - Alain JOCARD © 2019 AFP

Police officers patrol on September 8, 2021 in Paris in front of the special courtroom set up for the trial of the November 13 attacks (photo illustration) – Alain JOCARD © 2019 AFP

“The trial was not exemplary and the rights of the defense were abused.” The words are harsh and the reactions are numerous. Nearly three weeks after the reading of the verdict in the trial of the November 13 attacks, eleven defense lawyers signed a critical platform to denounce the holding of the debates as well as the sentences imposed.

The 40 lawyers defending the accused were asked to sign this text published by The world. Among the eleven signatories are Mes Olivia Ronen and Martin Vettes, the lawyers of Salah Abdeslam, sentenced to incompressible life imprisonment.

“It’s a sanction that we lawyers can find unjustified”, already denounced the lawyer on BFMTV last week, considering that “the sentence given was disconnected from everything we had been able to hear” during the trial. .

“Ten months of hearing that were useless”

Contrary to the “laudatory” comments made since the verdict was pronounced, the criminal lawyers believe “that the conduct of this trial and the solution that resulted from it are in contradiction with the founding principles of our criminal legislation”. For them, “the principle of the strict interpretation of criminal law has been abandoned, the burden of proof reversed”.

For these lawyers, three elements have been retained “from the most flawed legal theories”: the principle of “coaction”, which is based on the fact that the attacks are in fact “a single crime scene” and which has earned Salah Abdeslam to be condemned to the heaviest sentence of the French penal code. “A slow death sentence” denounced by criminal lawyers. And finally the definition of the offense of terrorist criminal association, an offense considered as catch-all, and for which “it is the accusation that the doubt has benefited”.

“Our feeling is that these ten months of hearing were useless in the final decision, they continue, denouncing “a political decision before being a legal decision”.

The collective of lawyers wants proof that “the fate of twenty defendants was debated in forty-eight hours”. Was there a debate “on such short notice?” “How not to think that everything was played in advance, when the written decision resumes, for the most part, what was found in the indictment”, they continue a week after the conviction of the 20 accused becomes final in the absence of appeals.

“Surprised and shocked”

This review has been widely commented on. Until the public prosecutor near the Court of Cassation, and public prosecutor of Paris at the time of the attacks. François Molins said to himself, in the columns of The Obs“surprised and shocked” on reading this forum.

“Justice can be proud of what it has accomplished”, decides the magistrate.

The president of the Life for Paris victims’ association quickly reacted to this forum, saying on Twitter that the defense lawyers who signed the text are “trialing the trial and trying to use it to criticize anti-terrorism justice” and do so. “by treating as naive those who would not agree”.

“Attacking what would have been a political trial by a political forum under the guise of law is quite curious”, continues Christophe Naudin, historian and survivor of the Bataclan.

For Me Gérard Chemla, lawyer for 143 civil parties, “the only courageous comment on a judgment that we disapprove of is made before a court of justice, that is called democratic justice”.

Original article published on

Leave a Comment