A Corsican nationalist, tried for series of attacks perpetrated in 2012 on the island against second homes, was sentenced Thursday to three years of suspended imprisonment, we learned from concordant sources. Jean-Philippe Zani, who suffers at 60 years of heart problems, appeared free since Wednesday before the Special Assize Court of Paris, composed only of professional magistrates.
The facts date back to May and December 2012: several dozen attacks had then targeted second homes throughout the island, mostly belonging to mainland, without causing any casualties. The Corsican National Liberation Front (FLNC) had claimed these "blue nights", the first since 2006, in the name of its "fight against real estate speculation".
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The investigators had dismantled a clandestine cell operating on behalf of the FLNC in the Valinco region, on the coast of South Corsica, which had led to initial indictments in November 2013 and June 2014. The latter were based on surveillance and sound systems with microphones placed in cars or a bar in Ajaccio.
Six people already sentenced in 2018
Jean-Philippe Zani was originally scheduled to appear in court in June 2018, along with eight other nationalists, but his case was severed due to his health condition. He was found guilty of terrorist criminal association (AMT) offense, in accordance with the requisitions of the national anti-terrorist prosecutor's office (PNAT), said a judicial source. As requested by the prosecution, the court sentenced him to three years' imprisonment with a simple suspended sentence, his lawyer and the judicial source said. The court also ordered his inclusion in the register of perpetrators of terrorist offences (Fijait). However, he was partially acquitted of weapons offences.
In this case, one of the last linked to the FLNC before the group announced in 2014 to engage in a process of demilitarization, the Special Assize Court had acquitted two Corsican nationalists on June 22, 2018. Among them, Pierre Paoli, who was suspected of having been the leader of the National Liberation Front of Corsica. Six other men were convicted, three with warrants of committal.
Attacks on second homes have resumed for a little over a year on the island of Beauty, the FLNC claiming 17. A new group, called "Ghjuventu Clandestina Corsa" (Corsican Underground Youth), which announced its creation in February, has claimed responsibility for numerous actions against villas of newcomers.