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French court convicts six teens in teacher’s beheading case

Courtesy: Geo News/Reuters

The French court delivered sentences ranging from 14 months to two years, all of which were suspended or commuted, meaning no jail time for any defendant

Six teenagers faced a French court’s judgment for their involvement in a case of the 2020 beheading of teacher Samuel Paty.

The court delivered sentences ranging from 14 months to two years, all of which were suspended or commuted, meaning no jail time for any defendant.

Paty, a 47-year-old history teacher, was fatally attacked near his school in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine on October 16, 2020. The attacker, an 18-year-old Chechen refugee, was shot dead by the police on the spot soon after the attack.

The young attacker acted after social media messages accused Paty of displaying cartoons of Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) from Charlie Hebdo in his class. The trial was held behind closed doors due to the defendants’ young ages, between 13 and 15 years old during the events.

Five teens, aged 14 or 15 at the time, were charged with criminal conspiracy for identifying Paty to the killer in exchange for money.

Four received suspended sentences ranging from 14 to 18 months. One of them was sentenced to two years, with 18 months suspended, serving six months with an electronic tag.

A 13-year-old girl falsely claimed Paty asked Muslim students to leave the classroom before showing the cartoons. The court found that she wasn’t present during the incident. She received an 18-month suspended sentence.

1- Header image: A portrait of murdered teacher Samuel Paty at the school where he taught. — Reuters File

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