“I'm looking for flagrant offenses, the procedure is not really my thing.
"Patrick M., ex-policeman of the North Bac in Marseille permanently dismissed from the police, summed up on Monday the line of defense of the 18 officials, on the first day of a trial which will last until April 22.
Three were dismissed, while the others continue their careers.
Despite excellent reviews from his superiors, a medal of honor and exceptional advancement, Patrick M. was appearing for having kept four “bars” of cannabis and 540 euros taken from a dealer's bag.
"When we work on city delinquency, it's normal to ask for the Bac," confirms Matthieu P., suspended for a month and a half and today in Bac, in the region of the Berre pond, at the west of Marseille.
Like him, the other defendants developed, during the examination of their personality, their "passion" for this particular profession of the police, the "jump over", the "flag", rapid intervention ...
And with results: shortly before the start of the investigation and its suspension for two months, Brigadier-Chief Sébastien L. had, in January 2012, discovered in the trunk of a car ten Kalashnikovs, with 20 chargers, including ten stocked.
One of the biggest seizures of weapons in the history of Marseille which should have made him pass major, a promotion still blocked.
He is now the leader of the break-in group at the North police station and his "transfer to the PJ will depend on the judgment".
“It's rewarding and rewarding to be in Bac.
I work at the northern police station, each time I pass the Bac Nord gate, I do so with my head held high, ”he told the bar.
Cannabis, cigarettes and money
However, it is for aggravated theft in assembly or transfer and transport of narcotics that all these police officers appear, after nearly three months of pre-trial detention, carried out at the end of 2012 for five of them.
Because, despite highly rated administrative files, it is criticized for all the freedoms taken with the procedure, in a context where the hierarchy requested monthly 34 cases and 42 interventions on public roads each month, in these sensitive areas of Marseille where traffic narcotics is ubiquitous.
Trial of the former police officers of the Bac Nord de Marseille: "I lost my job, my salary and my honor"
Seizures and destruction without a legal framework of cannabis, cash, dealers' bags including both, but also cartridges of cigarettes, a booty partly found in the false ceilings and lockers of the premises of the anti-crime brigade with also some jewelry ... The charges are heavy and had led the Minister of the Interior at the time, Manuel Valls, to dissolve the North Bac.
The only civil party in this case, a Marseille dealer accusing the police of having stolen money from him, did not appear at the hearing, nor did he send a lawyer, while maintaining his complaint.
The criminal charges were dropped during the long investigation.
The defense intends to emphasize that the tapping in service vehicles and the premises of the Bac are of poor quality and not very convincing.
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“I'm trying to forget about this case, but it's hard.
We have been judged, soiled, singled out… It's disproportionate.
I was fortunate not to have been incarcerated, but I went without pay for six months.
We paid, ”testifies Mohamed C., now brigadier-chief and group leader in the suburbs of Marseille.
This father of three is criticized for not having prevented a theft of a dealer's bag and for having destroyed cannabis outside of any procedure.
Relations with "advisers"
“If the remuneration rules for 'advisers' who provide information to the police are very strict, at the field level, it does not work like that.
These are administrative or ethical faults which have already been sanctioned by the disciplinary council, ”said Frédéric Monneret, lawyer for two police officers prosecuted, in particular, for having recovered cartridges of cigarettes.
“When a street vendor runs away abandoning his merchandise, it's hard to talk about theft.
These cigarettes were given to smoking police officers, informants and even homeless people.
"There was a fashion among drug traffickers who said that the police had stolen money from them during seizure or search", continues Me Alain Lhote, defending a dismissed police officer.
“You have to take this type of statement with a lot of caution.
Great-grandson, grandson and son of a policeman,
Nicolas F., returned to the police at 17, wants despite the nine months of suspension, including three closed, to be transferred again to the North Bac after the trial: “The police, I only knew that.
Adrenaline, flagrante delicto, that's what I like.