Actual News Magazine

two yellow vests tried on appeal after a demonstration enamelled with violence

Eylül 5, 20220

Nearly three years after the events, two yellow vests returned to the courtroom in Amiens on Monday. Both were sentenced at first instance to two and three months suspended prison sentencein February 2020, for having participated in a demonstration enamelled with violence, on October 5, 2019. One, Romain Ladent, an associative activist known in the city, had been arrested with a cutter, the other Titouan, with a stone. Both deny having wanted to use it as a weapon.Read also
Amiens: two activists tried for carrying a cutter and a stone in act 47 of yellow vests

It is Titouan who first advances. As at the first trial, he assures him, he did not know that the sector was prohibited for demonstrations. The summons, he did not hear them, the insults against a police officer, which earned him also being tried for contempt, he never said thems. “The judicial police officer told me, if I admit everything, without a lawyer, in 24 hours I was out.“The stone is a friend to whom he lent his jacket which slipped into his pocket, he did not notice.

Titouan’s defense challenges the police version

The Advocate General, Fouzia Boukhalfa, sweeps away this last argument: “the stone weighs 225 grams, hard to believe he didn’t feel anything in his pocket“Like the lawyer for the civil party police officer, Maître Hélène Bertrandie, she recalls the context of violence and degradation of this 47th Saturday of yellow vests: “The windows of six blown up banking establishments, four heavily degraded bus shelters, two burnt containers”. The prosecution emphasizes “the precise description” given by the police officer: “sunglasses, military jacket, red hair”. She asks the court to confirm the sentence of the first instancenamely a two-month suspended prison sentence.

It is precisely the testimony of the police that Titouan’s lawyer, Maître Coline Bouillon, is attacking: the commissioner who arrested him was on the rue des deportees, the agent who says he was outraged, 1.8 kilometers away, boulevard de Beauvillé: “Cit is impossible that they witnessed the facts at the same time“, she hammers. “The accusation is based on the word of an accuser, who is not here today (…) There was no exculpatory investigation, no confrontation of the policeman, no hearing of the witness” to whom Titouan would have given his jacket. She therefore pleads for the pure and simple release of her client.

Romain Ladent: debates around the cutter

Comes the turn of Romain Ladent. This associative activist, well known in Amiens, was arrested on October 5, 2019, a few moments after the summons. In his bag, a cutter. “I took part in a declared demonstration. I did not hear the summons”, he underlines at the bar. During his arrest, he assures him, he has “was named by the police. They said, it’s Romain Ladent. Indeed I had a cutter, but it’s not a weapon.

It is on this point that the president insists:you know the rules, when you go to a demonstration, you don’t come with a weapon”. The Advocate General agrees. “It’s an object that can kill. People have had their throats cut with a cutter“. She evokes “the panoply of the perfect protester“, in the defendant’s bag: “propaganda stickers, markers, scarf and cutter.” The prosecution judges the sentence of first instance “perfectly suited”.

It’s someone who disturbs

The advice of Romain Ladent then takes the floor. “That’s right, this Saturday was one of the most violent that Amiens has known. In one of the most violent demonstrations, do you challenge the person who is the least violent?”pretends to wonder Maître Stéphane Diboundje“At that time, we could not know that he had a cutter“He highlights the very short time between the summons and the arrest, making it impossible to know”that he did not want to disperse”.

Decision on November 7

On the cutter, weapon by destination for the parquet floor, “It’s the use that is made of the object that will determine whether it is a weapon or not. The cutter was not used, so it cannot be a weapon. “For the lawyer, Romain Ladent, “it’s someone who disturbs.” He is joined in his analysis by the other counsel for the defendant, Maître Pascal Bibard: “one has the impression that justice is instrumentalised.” Both are also asking for release.

The decision of the Amiens Court of Appeal is expected November 7the day of Titouan’s 26th birthday and more than three years after the demonstration.

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