Assa Traoré, sued for defamation by the gendarmes whom she accuses of having killed her brother in 2016 in the Val-d'Oise, made Friday before the Paris court a sort of
of the death of 'Adama.
In the absence of perspectives on a possible trial in this affair with strong media coverage, the parties debated
"before the hour",
in the words of Assa Traoré, the causes of the death of his brother, Adama Traoré.
Read also: Adama Traoré case: prosecuted for defamation by the gendarmes, Assa Traoré maintains his "I accuse"
The 24-year-old black man died on July 19, 2016, in the Persan barracks almost two hours after his arrest in his town of Beaumont-sur-Oise (Val-d'Oise), after a race -pursuit, on a hot day.
For five years, investigating judges have been trying to determine the causes of this death, based on medical expertise whose conclusions differ on the responsibility of the gendarmes, not indicted at this stage.
These three soldiers, with whom Assa Traore hoped to be confronted, were absent from the hearing.
To prove or on the contrary invalidate the
necessary to characterize a defamation, defense and civil parties relied on documents from the investigation file, still in progress.
They were particularly hard on the duration of the arrest, from less than a minute for the lawyers of the gendarmes to nine minutes for Yassine Bouzrou, lawyer of the Traoré family who has several times drawn a parallel with the George Floyd case, recent symbol of police violence in the United States.
"When an individual is in the hands of a public service and he dies, we can estimate that there is a responsibility of the individuals who questioned him"
, rebuked Me Bouzrou.
"I will leave my life there"
When the details of the arrest and death of Adama Traoré are described by the lawyer, in harsh terms, the mother of the deceased bursts into tears. At the end of the trial, the hitherto serene atmosphere became tense and emotionally charged. The audience of 70 people, silent during the hearing, suddenly applauded the long plea of the lawyer, and the speech of Assa Traoré.
“We will fight to the end. If necessary, I will leave my life there to have truth and justice, ”
she said. An uneasiness that very morning had prevented her from attending the pleadings and requisitions. At the call of the collective La Vérité pour Adama, around 300 people gathered around 2 p.m. in front of the court.
At the call of the collective La Vérité pour Adama, around 300 people gathered around 2 p.m. in front of the court THOMAS SAMSON / AFP
For five years, the Traoré family has been mobilizing to see the gendarmes on the dock. Subject of the trial which took place over two days: the tribune of Assa Traoré, entitled "J'accuse", published on Facebook in July 2019, on the third anniversary of the death. In a reference to Emile Zola's formula, Assa Traoré cited the names of the gendarmes and accused them in an anaphora of
“having killed (his) brother Adama Traoré by crushing him with the weight of their bodies”
“of not not to have rescued ”
“ to have refused to dismantle (him) by asserting that he was faking ”. “I assume this letter. If the French justice that I was supposed to trust had done the necessary work, perhaps at that time I did notwould not have wanted to write this letter "
, she defended herself.
Read also: Assa Traoré files a complaint against the Paris police prefect for "slanderous denunciation"
Prosecutor Yves Badorc asked the court to condemn her because
"the right to indignation has its limits".
For Me Sandra Chirac Kollarik, lawyer for a soldier quoted in the tribune,
“the goal from the start is not the search for the truth but to approach the establishment of the postulate of the family from the first day: the guilt of the gendarmes ”. "This forum has nothing to do with justice,"
abounded Me Thibault de Montbrial, counsel to a gendarme who filed for civil action.
"The justice that is demanded is no longer having a decision but a conviction at all costs for everyone"
, he added. The decision was put under advisement on July 1. In February, the gendarmes had obtained a conviction of Assa Traoré by the Paris Court of Appeal, before which they attacked him in civil proceedings for
“infringing the presumption of innocence”.