On the second day of the appeal trial for the death in 2013 of the young anti-fascist activist Clément Méric, Samuel Dufour assumed his past as a skinhead but sought to decorrelate his opinions from the violence with which he is accused.
To read also: Death of Clément Méric: judged on appeal, an ex-skinhead invokes self-defense
Asked Wednesday at the bar about images discovered on a USB key, displaying Hitler, Mussolini or even white supremacist slogans, Samuel Dufour, 27 years old today, declared: "
If you want to hear me say that I am a skinhead, a nazi, a fascist, and whatever else you want to put behind, yes ... but I didn't touch Clément Méric
You understand, you are not judged for your opinions
" but the court is interested in "
how you express them vis-à-vis others
", as part of the personality examination, retorted Cosima Ouhioun , lawyer of the Méric family.
In 2018, the Paris Assize Court sentenced Samuel Dufour to seven years in prison for willful violence in assembly and with weapons, resulting in the death of Clément Méric, without intention of giving it.
Although he did not hit the victim during the fatal brawl in 2013, his participation had prevented the anti-fascists from rescuing Clément Méric, according to the court.
Samuel Dufour had appealed.
In this new trial before the Assizes of Essonne, which is to last until June 4, he and another accused face up to twenty years imprisonment.
Tuesday, the court was interested in the personality of the former skinhead Esteban Morillo, who had admitted at first instance, in 2018, to have delivered "
" fatal to the victim and had been sentenced to eleven years in prison.
We smash them.
On June 5, 2013, at the end of the afternoon, two small groups of young far-left and far-right activists accidentally met at a private sale in the Saint-Lazare district in Paris.
Forty minutes later, a fight breaks out in the street.
Clément Méric, an 18-year-old student from Sciences Po Paris, collapsed on the asphalt after being punched in the face.
The police find messages on Samuel Dufour's phone.
"Hi, I hit with your brass knuckle," wrote the accused.
- Seriously, what did you do again?
- Ba, he and gone to the hospital.
5 against 3. We smash them.
At the helm, Samuel Dufour, with an imposing build under his suit waistcoat, denied having used such a brass knuckle (a metal weapon pierced with holes through which you pass your fingers).
In the first instance, the expert reports could not certify that the injuries observed during the brawl had been inflicted by this weapon, but these expert opinions had not excluded its use either.
Read also: Death of Clément Méric: appeal trial for two former skinheads
On Wednesday, the accused insisted on not being "
known for violence before or after
" the death of Clément Méric.
The investigator who conducted her personality test in 2013 shortly after the fact, she underlined a "
change in behavior
" in adolescence.
Literally, I went crazy
", explained Samuel Dufour: the apprentice baker "
" of being "
treated as a fascist
" as soon as he spoke in public about his opinions, such as his feeling of injustice. in front of a blocked social elevator for his parents "
who work but cannot get by
I said to myself: you want to see a facho, you are going to see one!
And I went there thoroughly,
”said the young man.
Read also: Repentant skinheads, heavy sentences and gray areas: the story of the Méric trial
Skull shaving. Bombers. Bodybuilding. Evenings at the Local, a popular bar of Serge Ayoub, at the head of the far-right movement the Third Way. And Nazi tattoos. To integrate this movement, "
it is necessary to quickly make the tattoos, it is necessary to send images ... but today, I do not think any more like that
", assured the young man.
Was that a mistake?
», Asked the president of the court. "
Everyone makes mistakes
", evaded the accused, who also said to be "
sorry that there is a death in this story
". To the investigator who carried out his personality test in 2013, Samuel Dufour summed up as follows: "
I'm a big jerk, who doesn't want to be fooled