“It's a real sense of control of the bands that has settled over the last few months.
The offenders are there from morning to night, seven days a week. They are at home.
The inhabitants feel weakened.
Emmanuel Compain, president of the free trade union association Olympiades (Aslo), does not mince his words.
However, the enormous co-ownership of the Olympiads where he lives and which has some 11,000 inhabitants on 2.5 hectares "is not considered one of the hot districts of Paris", insists a Parisian police commissioner.
On this huge slab in Chinatown, above the rue de Tolbiac in the 13th arrondissement, 1970s style, flanked by its pseudo-pagodas, shabby towers and HLM bars, with a mini-Rungis in the basement which supplies "Chinatown", giant and dark parking lots and two dilapidated shopping arcades, the question of the rise in delinquency has arisen particularly since the end of confinement.
The slab and its surroundings ignited
July 14 was the culmination of this worrying escalation.
On the sidelines of the “official” fireworks, the slab and its surroundings ignited, both literally and figuratively. Mortar fire, however prohibited for sale and qualified as weapons by destination, followed one another for several days.
As well as arson, acts of vandalism, death threats on residents and ambushes with the police ... A situation such as on July 21, the public prosecutor, the police chief and the General Staff from the police headquarters, landed on the slab.
“The craziest thing is that most of these senior officials stationed in Paris did not know the neighborhood.
It was the first time they had come!
»Remembers Emmanuel Compain.
On July 21, the public prosecutor, Rémy Heitz, went to the Olympics with the police headquarters, the mayor and Emmanuel Compain (right).
But the violence in July is far from being an exception.
At the Olympics, residents are now so overwhelmed by the violence that they are seriously considering putting their hand in the wallet by calling on a private security company.
Even if it is expensive.
According to a specialist, the provision of three security guards 24 hours a day to which they are thinking would approach one million euros per year.
“It is not that we have the impression of having been abandoned by the police station of the 13th century, insists Emmanuel Compain.
The police are present.
Rather, they are powerless.
"If my phone rings in my bag, I don't take it out"
This Thursday afternoon, the slab is calm.
"It's too early," quips a trader.
At one of the entrances to the car park, a lookout, a minor, glued to his smartphone, opens the door for you and filters the entrances.
“They stash their stuff in the parking lots,” says one resident.
Here, sums up another, it is "drug trafficking, tearing of bags, insults, threats, tags, racketeering of traders, perpetual vandalism of CCTV cameras which hamper their traffic, street vendors ...".
"On the slab," Noelle * says indignantly, "if my phone rings in my bag, I won't take it out."
"The septuagenarian, who has lived here for 40 years, nostalgia for" when it was the spirit of the village.
That we did not ask our children to make a detour to avoid the basements ”.
Tired, the condominium has also stopped changing the parking lot door closers.
“They screw them up.
We had to buy about twenty a year, at a rate of 1,500 euros per unit.
»On the Avenue d'Ivry side, between the maze of shopping arcades, many shops have lowered the iron curtain.
In front of the PMU, young people hold the walls.
“This summer,” continues a resident, “there were about thirty of them.
They install old armchairs, put on music, take out the shisha, smoke joints, bring back vandalized vélibs, jostle people.
"The youngest are 11 years old," said a police officer.
They are not all from the neighborhood.
Some come from neighboring cities and even from Val-de-Marne.
It's all very porous.
A senior police official points to the architecture: "A landlocked city (...) where police cars cannot drive, with underground streets (...) which generate drug trafficking."
/ LP / Céline Carez
“There has been a feeling of insecurity since the end of confinement, confirms Jacques Hua, secretary of the association of traders in the Asian quarter, but this delinquency is a minority which brings misery to a majority.
In recent days alone, three Asian ladies have been the victims of violent assaults by the same perpetrators.
Jacques Hua does not close the door to the scenario of a company of private security guards, even if the co-ownership had already, in 2016, called upon dog handlers.
“It hadn't been conclusive.
"Since this week, a correspondent dedicated to the 13th century at the Paris prosecutor's office"
For his part, the mayor DVG of the thirteenth, Jérôme Coumet, who multiplies the meetings with the police commissioner of the thirteenth, the co-ownership, the Paris prosecutor's office and the traders, denounces a "cruel lack of police officers" but wants to be optimistic.
“There is a real beginning to take control of the neighborhood.
"And actions:" Since this week, there is a correspondent dedicated to the thirteenth at the Paris prosecutor's office.
Last Wednesday, the narcotics officers arrived with a sniffer dog.
And there have been evictions of squatters in the shopping arcade, ”he underlines.
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A senior police official, who knows this neighborhood well, is more pessimistic… “There has been a slow deterioration.
The delinquents have appropriated the territory.
"And to point out a difficulty mainly linked to" this improbable and unique architecture: a city placed on a landlocked slab where police cars cannot circulate, with underground streets, dilapidated and murky which generate drug trafficking.
Apart from evicting the families of drug dealers, which takes years and breaking the stone - which seems technically impossible - it is difficult to remedy that.