After the decision of the Court of Cassation which confirmed the criminal irresponsibility of the murderer of Sarah Halimi, a Jewish sexagenarian killed in 2017 in Paris, Emmanuel Macron said he wanted on Sunday a change in the law so that the taking of narcotics does not suppress the criminal liability. “Deciding to take narcotics and then going ‘like crazy’ shouldn’t take away your criminal responsibility in my view. On this subject, I would like the Minister of Justice to present a change in the law as quickly as possible ”, declared the Head of State.
Anger of representatives of the Jewish community
This statement comes as the Court of Cassation confirmed on Wednesday the criminal irresponsibility of the murderer of Sarah Halimi, a Jewish sexagenarian killed in 2017 in Paris, while confirming the anti-Semitic nature of the crime. “It is not for me to comment on a court decision, but I would like to tell the family, relatives of the victim and all our fellow citizens of the Jewish faith who were awaiting this trial, my warm support and the determination of the Republic to protect them, ”added Emmanuel Macron.
“In the Republic, we do not judge citizens who are sick and no longer have discernment, we treat them. But deciding to take narcotics and then become “like crazy” should not in my eyes remove your criminal responsibility, “insisted Emmanuel Macron. The decision of the Court of Cassation on Wednesday does not call into question the psychiatric hospitalization of the murderer, a heavy user of cannabis since adolescence, ordered by justice. But it means there will be no trial, which has sparked disappointment and anger from representatives of the Jewish community.
A “delirious puff” according to the experts
The case, which has been controversial for four years in France and in Israel, in particular on the anti-Semitism which would permeate certain working-class neighborhoods, dates back to April 4, 2017. That night, Kobili Traoré, 27, of the Muslim faith, made burst into her 65-year-old neighbor, Lucie Attal, also called Sarah Halimi. To the cries of “Allah Akbar”, he knocks it while reciting verses from the Koran, before throwing it over the balcony of their HLM in Belleville, in the east of Paris. On the one hand, a standoff between the Paris prosecutor’s office and the investigating judge over the anti-Semitic nature of the gesture, finally retained by the magistrate in 2018.
On the other hand, seven experts successively examine Kobili Traoré: unanimously, they conclude that the young man was in the throes of a “delusional puff”. After a public debate, the Paris Court of Appeal, on December 19, 2019, declared Kobili Traoré criminally irresponsible, and ordered his hospitalization with security measures for 20 years. This decision caused a scandal, provoking strong political reactions. “The need for a trial is there,” then commented President Emmanuel Macron from Jerusalem, collecting a rare update from the two highest French magistrates on the independence of the judiciary.