A top French court has upheld a decision not to charge an “Allahu Akbar” yelling man accused of murdering a Jewish woman, claiming he was not criminally responsible because he was in a drugs-related “delirious episode” at the time.
France’s Court of Cassation ruled that Kobili Traoré would not be charged in the death of an Orthodox Jewish woman named Sarah Halimi. Halimi died in 2017 after Traoré, who was her neighbour, allegedly beat and pushed her out of the window of her Paris apartment while praying and shouting.
The Court of Cassation hearings began last month and looked into whether or not to overrule a prior appeal court ruling from December of 2019, which maintained that Traoré’s excessive marijuana use had triggered a “delirious episode”, leaving him not criminally responsible for the alleged acts.
“We do not understand the determination and procrastination that consistently seeks to turn this killer into a demented person, when he is a murderer whose presumed detention doesn’t even hide his hateful anti-Semitism,” Francis Kalifat of the Jewish group CRIF said at the time.
Kalifat reacted to the new ruling, saying on Twitter, “Now in our country, we can torture and kill Jews with impunity,” while tagging France’s President Emmanuel Macron and Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti.
France: Anti-Semitic Incidents Up 73 Percent in 2018 https://t.co/Nvwz1CcBIt
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 14, 2019
President Macron had criticised a court move to refuse to hold Traoré to account last year, saying that there was a need for a trial. His remarks sparked criticism from those who spoke of separation between the powers of the executive and the judiciary.
Lawyers representing the family of Halimi stated the ruling was a “bad message for Jewish citizens” and viewed to take their case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). Traoré’s lawyer said that while he understood the family’s anger, he claimed his client was not fit to stand trial.
Dovid Efine, the editor of the Jewish newspaper Algemeiner, commented on the top court ruling saying: “The blow to French Jews can’t be understated. We stand in full solidarity.”
The case is just one of several murders of Jews in France in recent years, such as the murder of 85-year-old Mireille K., a Holocaust survivor who was stabbed 11 times to death by her Muslim neighbour in 2018.
A report released in 2019 revealed that France had seen a 73 per cent rise in antisemitic incidents in the year Mireille K. was killed.