Absent from the hearing, the eighth accused is the subject of proceedings in Tunisia

Judged in his absence, the eighth defendant in the trial of the Nice attack of July 14, 2016 is the subject of “judicial proceedings” of a “terrorist” nature in Tunisia, where he is imprisoned, the Tunisian authorities indicated to the special assize court of Paris.

Brahim Tritou’s lawyer had already mentioned this detention, confirmed by the Tunisian justice in its response to the request for international criminal assistance from France, read this Tuesday at the hearing by the president of the special assize court Laurent raviot.

He says he has never seen Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel

This 37-year-old Tunisian who had been living in France since 2008 was arrested in Nice in December 2016. Investigators suspect him of having served as an intermediary between two other defendants, Ramzi Arefa and Artan Henaj, for the purchase of the semi-automatic pistol. automatic which will then be sold to the author of the attack, which he disputes.

He also always maintained that he had never met the author of the attack, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, while Ramzi Arefa had affirmed that they had seen him together, a few weeks before the events, to try to sell him a dummy weapon.

Released under judicial supervision in January 2019, Brahim Tritrou fled to Tunisia in July 2020. Arrested in early 2022 on the basis of the French arrest warrant, he is detained in Tunisia, “suspected of having joined a terrorist cell on the ground French in 2016,” according to local authorities. “His setbacks […] are exclusively linked to the procedure of the Nice attack “, which left 86 dead and more than 400 injured, according to Laurent Raviot.

The prison sentence incurred is increased from 5 to 10 years

The Tunisian is however not prosecuted for acts of a terrorist nature in France. Indicted for “criminal association for the preparation of offenses punishable by at least five years’ imprisonment”, he faced five years in prison. But the court announced on Tuesday that it was requalifying the charges as “criminal association for the preparation of crimes or misdemeanors punishable by ten years’ imprisonment”.

Likewise, she decided to add an additional question to those she will have to answer concerning another defendant, Endri Elezi: if he is found guilty of arms trafficking, was it “in a meeting”? Of the four Albanian defendants at trial, he was the only one for whom this aggravating circumstance did not appear in the indictment. For him too, the maximum penalty increases from five to ten years in prison.

source site