A heavy uncertainty hangs over the continuation of the trial of the attacks of January 2015, which opened on September 2 before the assizes in Paris.
Thursday, at the end of the morning, one of the eleven defendants present in the room (three are on the run) was seized with nausea.
Nezar Mickaël Pastor-Alwatik, 35, was taken back to Fleury-Mérogis remand center to undergo medical examinations, including screening for Covid-19.
According to Me Marie Dosé, his lawyer, he had arrived at the courthouse with a high fever and had complained since the day before of headaches, coughing and respiratory discomfort.
President Jorna suspended the hearing until Friday morning.
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Several scenarios are possible.
If Mr. Pastor-Alwatik recovers quickly from a slight indisposition, the debates could resume no later than early next week.
If, on the other hand, he is positive for Covid-19, it is to be feared that the trial will be postponed sine die, all his co-defendants - and perhaps their lawyers - having to undergo at least seven days of isolation.
Two boxes accommodate, each, five accused and a permanent police escort.
The president had warned that the presence of a sick person in the room, despite health vigilance measures, would lead to such a dismissal.
However, the very busy schedule of the Paris judicial court does not seem to allow to maintain beyond November 10, the deadline for the verdict, the unprecedented device - security, courtrooms reserved for broadcasts, etc.
- set up for the study of this file.
The trial, scheduled to last ten weeks, which presents phenomenal organizational constraints, should then start from scratch.
With the additional difficulty that next year, at the same time, is scheduled (in the courthouse of the Ile de la Cité) the trial of the attacks of November 2015.
Another possibility: Mr. Pastor-Alwatik is negative for Covid, but suffers from a pathology that does not allow him to follow the debates.
Me Dosé declared that she would refuse to represent him.
In other words, to attend the hearing if he is unable to take part in his defense.
And this, at a time when the assizes were going to begin to examine the implication of the defendants in an alleged terrorist association.
The days of October 12 and 13 were reserved for the case of Mr. Pastor-Alwatik.
Since September 2, due to the timetable set by the president, the accused have spoken very little, which raises the question of fairness.
On Tuesday, Mr. Jorna thus prevented the defense from responding to a civil party who expressed his conviction that all the accused are guilty.
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The court has a third option, provided the ten other defendants are fit to appear: severance of the case of Mr. Pastor-Alwatik.
Advantage: the trial is coming to an end, a verdict is rendered, and the terrible moments of emotion experienced since September 2, through the depositions of the civil parties, will not have been endured for nothing.
Disadvantage: Mr. Pastor-Alwatik, whose council indicated that it would oppose the severance, would find himself in a gruesome situation.
It seems highly probable that if the debates continue, the verdict of this trial, whatever it may be, will be appealed.
Mr. Pastor-Alwatik would therefore have to appear alone for alleged acts committed by several people, the main witnesses of his trial being individuals convicted or acquitted but in the process of being tried again by another assize court.