opening of the appeal trial of the two main convicts

opening of the appeal trial of the two main convicts

On July 14, 2016, in Nice, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel caused 86 deaths and more than 300 injuries while driving his truck on the Promenade des Anglais, before being shot dead. Of the eight people convicted at first instance at the end of 2022, only two have appealed and will be tried on Monday April 22 before the Special Assize Court of Paris.

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In France, Mohamed Ghraieb, a 48-year-old Franco-Tunisian, and Chokri Chafroud, a 44-year-old Tunisian, are accused of having supported Lahouaiej Bouhlel in his criminal project. They were sentenced to 18 years in prison for criminal conspiracy terroristwhen their defense demanded acquittal.

By condemning Mohamed Ghraieb and Chokri Chafroud at 18 years in prison at first instance, the Court had gone beyond the requisitions of the prosecution. And this, despite the uncertainties of a trial haunted by the troubled and unstable personality of the author of the attack, Mohamed lahoueij Boulhel. The latter had left so many clues incriminating Ghraieb and Chafroud that the defense lawyers had notably argued that it was on purpose that their killer had involved their innocent clients in a “ sinister treasure hunt “.

The end of the trial scheduled for June 13

This theory was swept away by the first verdict. Certainly ” neither the judicial information nor the hearing made it possible to shed light on all the gray areas of the case “, however ” the Court has the firm conviction that Mohamed Ghraieb and Chokri Chafroud were associated with Lahoueij Bouhlel’s project by inspiring it and supporting it morally and mentally “, the president clarified.

For Vincent Brengarth, Mohamed Ghraieb’s lawyer, these 18 years in prison were pronounced “ for opinion ” And “ unrelated to the threat that Mr Graieb would present “. Today he wants to see his innocence recognized. Maître Arnoux, Chafroud’s lawyer, also says she wants “ justice demonstrates courage and discernment in a case which requires acquittal “.

The more than 2,000 civil parties hope for confirmation of the convictions. They will be able to follow the trial in Paris, via retransmission in Nice or by web radio. The trial is scheduled to end on June 13.

There is obviously impatience and a lot of stress, just like the first trial, because obviously it takes us back to everything we have experienced. This will bring out all the feelings. Obviously, there will always be the slightly delicate and stressful part, for everyone, which is the choice to testify or not. I know that many people have reiterated their choice to testify again. It is important. It is also a duty (…).

Testifying is “a duty”, according to Stéphane Erbs, co-president of the victims’ association “Promenade des Anges”

Laura Martel

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