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World French protesters demand trial for Jewish woman's killer

19:10  25 april  2021
19:10  25 april  2021 Source:   msn.com

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PARIS (AP) — Protesters in Paris and other French cities on Sunday denounced a ruling by France’s highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial.

People stage a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler) © Provided by Associated Press People stage a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler) A woman holds a placard that reads, © Provided by Associated Press A woman holds a placard that reads, "for Sarah Halimi we won't be quiet," during a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Thousands of people filled Trocadero Plaza in Paris, in front of the Eiffel Tower, answering a call by Jewish associations and groups fighting antisemitism who say that justice has not been done. Other protests took place in Marseille, Lyon, Strasbourg, Bordeaux and elsewhere.

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The announcement that the killer would not be sent to trial sparked outrage among the French and international Jewish community.

Halimi, a 65-year-old Jewish woman, died in 2017 after being pushed out of the window of her Paris apartment by her neighbor, Kobili Traoré, who allegedly shouted “Allahu Akbar” (“God is great” in Arabic). Traoré admitted pushing her.

A woman holds a placard depicting Sarah Halimi reading, © Provided by Associated Press A woman holds a placard depicting Sarah Halimi reading, "harassed, killed, defenestrated without justice no republic," during a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

The ruling from the Court of Cassation, issued this month, said there was enough evidence to show the act had antisemitic motives. But the court said a person who committed a crime while in a “delirious state” cannot be sent to trial — even if that state was caused by the habitual use of illegal drugs. Traoré used to smoke heavy quantities of cannabis.

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“According to unanimous opinions of different psychiatry experts, that man was presenting at the time of the facts a severe delirious state,” the court said.

A man holds a placard that reads, © Provided by Associated Press A man holds a placard that reads, "in France grandmothers are killed because they are jews," during a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. Eiffel Tower in the background. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Under French law, people cannot be held criminally responsible for actions committed while fully losing their judgment or self-control due to a psychiatric disorder. Traoré has been in a psychiatric hospital since Halimi’s death.

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People stage a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler) © Provided by Associated Press People stage a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Robert Ejnes, the executive director of CRIF, French Jewish umbrella group, said he came to Trocadero Plaza to support Halimi’s relatives.

“I think they are like the French people – they’re angry and don’t understand at all,” he said.

“Here are people who trust France’s government, France’s justice system, and who are confronted with this totally unfair decision. The killer is recognized as a killer, is recognized as being antisemitic but he won’t be tried. It’s simply unacceptable and it’s very hard for these people to even grieve,” he said.

Ilaï Laymond, a 19-year-old law student protesting in Paris, said “as a Jew but also as a French citizen, this court ruling affects me profoundly because it’s inexplicable.”

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“With this decision ... we feel abandoned," he said.

French President Emmanuel Macron, meanwhile, called for a change in French law.

“Deciding to take narcotics and then ‘going mad’ should, not in my view, remove your criminal responsibility,” Macron told the Le Figaro newspaper. He also expressed his support for the victim's family.

A man holds a placard during a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler) © Provided by Associated Press A man holds a placard during a protest organized by Jewish associations, who say justice has not been done for the killing of French Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, at Trocadero Plaza near Eiffel Tower in Paris, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Thousands of people have gathered in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti tweeted Sunday that he will present a bill in May to plug a legal vacuum in French law regarding the consequences of the voluntary use of drugs.

Protesters march with a banner of killed Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, during a demonstration in Marseille, southern France, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Crowds gathered Sunday in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole) © Provided by Associated Press Protesters march with a banner of killed Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, during a demonstration in Marseille, southern France, Sunday, April 25, 2021. Crowds gathered Sunday in Paris and other French cities to denounce a ruling by France's highest court that the killer of Jewish woman Sarah Halimi was not criminally responsible and therefore could not go on trial. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole)

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AP Journalist Alexandre Turnbull contributed to the story.

How killer escaped trial for anti-Semitic murder .
The decision not to prosecute a Jewish woman's killer because of his drug use sparks a legal row in France.Sarah Halimi was a Jewish, 65-year-old, former kindergarten director, who in April 2017 was beaten, then thrown to her death from her flat in north-east Paris.

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