Judge Resigns After ‘Allah Akbar’ Man Not Prosecuted for Killing Jewish Woman Because He was High

JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images

A judge has turned in his judicial robes in protest at the decision not to try a Malian migrant alleged to have beaten an elderly Jewish woman and thrown her to her death from a balcony while shouting “Allah Akbar!” on grounds that he was suffering from a delirious episode induced by heavy cannabis abuse.

France’s Court of Cassation ruled that Kobili Traoré, previously reported to be a convicted drug dealer, could not be held criminally responsible for Sarah Halimi’s killing due to his mental condition at the time.

“When the judgment was delivered and the Court of Cassation confirmed that Kobili Traoré, the murderer of Sarah Halimi, was made inaccessible to any criminal sanction, my first reaction as a judge was to say to myself ‘I’m dreaming!'” lamented Jack Broda, who sat on the bench of the Tribunal of Commerce, in an interview with FigaroVox.

“To protest, I decided to resign from my post. My resignation was accepted and… regretted,” he said.

Even if the migrant’s actions really were due entirely to delirium induced by his abuse of illegal drugs, the now-former judge argued that, having deliberately sought an altered state of mind through unlawful means, this should have been no defence, according to the legal maxim Nemo auditur propriam turpitudinem allegans: “No-one can be heard to [defend himself by] invoking his own turpitude/guilt”.

Broda said his view was informed by his experience beyond the world of the court, too, as a trained pharmacist with a diploma in medical ethics.

Broda stressed that, as a Jew himself, the decision not to try Traoré “obviously troubled me: what is this justice that takes up the cause of what appears to be an anti-Semitic assassination?”

The decision has received widespread condemnation from Jewish communities not just in France, where Christophe Castaner, a former government interior minister and leading light of President Emmanuel Macron’s La République En Marche! (LREM) was booed when he attended a rally in supposed of Sarah Halimi, but worldwide.

In New York City, for example, protesters rallied outside the French consulate, and projected images of the slain woman onto the building.

“We want to make sure that her murderer, the person who butchered her in Paris, that that person never walks the streets of this world,” said former New York State assemblyman Dov Hikind, who helped to organise the protest.

“Every civilized person in the world is Sarah Halimi, and the French government and the French people must get justice for Sarah Halimi and make sure this never, ever, ever happens again to any person anywhere,” he insisted.

France has in recent years become one of the State of Israel’s major sources of Aliyah — the “return” migration of Jews around the world to the historic Jewish homeland, supported by the Israeli government — as antisemitism becomes increasingly prevalent in the increasingly multicultural state.

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