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World 4 police officers charged after alleged assault of Black music producer

21:25  30 november  2020
21:25  30 november  2020 Source:   abcnews.go.com

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Alleged unprovoked attack on Michel Zecler, who also alleges racial abuse, was caught on film. Three of the officers have been mis en examen – the nearest thing to being formally charged in France French police caught on CCTV beating black music producer in his Paris studio – video.

Four French police officers have been charged in connection to the beating and racial abuse of a black music producer , a judicial source said Monday, days after the incident in Paris that intensified controversy over a new security law. The beating of music producer Michel Zecler - exposed in video

The alleged beating of a Black music producer by three police officers inside his Paris studio is stirring outrage in France.

a group of people walking in front of a sign: People take part in a demonstration against the controversial Global Security Law, in Bordeaux, France, on Nov. 28, 2020. © Jerome Gilles/NurPhoto via ZUMA Press via Newscom People take part in a demonstration against the controversial Global Security Law, in Bordeaux, France, on Nov. 28, 2020.

Paris' court of justice on Monday indicted four police officers, including three for "voluntary violence by a person holding public authority" and "forgery in public writing" for allegedly lying on police reports, according to local radio station Europe1.

Two of the police officers, a brigadier and a peacekeeper, were placed in pre-trial custody. The third, also a peacekeeper, was placed under judicial supervision. A fourth police officer suspected of having thrown a tear gas canister inside the studio during the arrest was charged Sunday, over a week after the alleged attack occurred on Nov. 21 in the 17th arrondissement of Paris.

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The fourth officer , accused of throwing a tear gas canister into the studio after the other officers were chased out, should be under judicial supervision, Heitz added. The investigation into the officers ’ actions will be handled by an examining magistrate.

Three police officers remained in custody Sunday on orders of Paris' top prosecutor Remy Heitz over last weekend's arrest of Black music producer Michel Zecler A fourth officer , who arrived later at Zecler's studio and threw a tear gas grenade, will not be held in custody, but will still be charged with

In a seven-minute video recorded on surveillance cameras, producer Michel Zecler is seen being beaten several times with a police baton and kicked by three police officers in his studio. Zecler was first approached by police after being seen on camera without a mask on and leaving his car to enter his studio.

The videos were shared with journalists of French outlet Loopsider. According to Loopsider's reporting, the officers claimed Zecler dragged them inside the studio, hit them and then called for reinforcements, a version that the surveillance camera videos refute.

"It's going so fast, I wonder if they are real police," Michel said in an interview with Loopsider.

The officers also allegedly attacked young artists, including a minor, who were present in the studio.

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Four officers suspended from duty after allegedly beating a black music producer went before a judge in France on Sunday, one day after The police officers were suspended and detained by the National Police Inspectorate General after a video appeared to show them beating black music

Four French police officers held in custody over the beating of a Black music producer have been placed under formal investigation, Agence France Presse (AFP) and France Info said on Monday. Charges against the officers would include the use of racist language and intentional violence with

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Two lawyers for three of the officers did not respond to ABC News' request for comment.

France’s Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said last week the police officers had "screwed up" and asked for their suspension "as a precaution."

Zecler's lawyer, Hafida El Ali, called the beating "despicable" and described the officers' behavior as similar to "thugs and delinquents."

El Ali told ABC News media coverage of this case helped speed up the indictments.

French President Emmanuel Macron has also weighed in, saying the alleged attack was "unacceptable" and adding that the nation "will never accept the violence perpetrated against our police and our gendarmes, all those who wear the uniform."

The French government has been accused of attacking public freedoms through a much-criticized bill on global security that was approved in France's National Assembly on Nov. 24.

More than 133,000 people demonstrated across France on Saturday to protest the bill, which protects the faces and identity of police officers from being disseminated with a "malicious intent" online. Some protestors carried "Je Suis Michel" signs in support of the music producer.

Four French police officers charged with brutal beating of Black music producer .
The incident comes amid a national debate about the value of filming police officers on active duty. Michel Zecler, the 41-year-old music producer, claims that the officers repeatedly insulted him as they beat him and that they also used a clear racial epithet while they did so. The officers denied that charge during their interrogation, Paris prosecutor Rémy Heitz told reporters Sunday.

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