Six teenagers convicted in connection with beheading of French teacher Samuel Paty in 2020

8 December 2023, 21:02 | Updated: 8 December 2023, 21:10

Six teenagers were convicted for their roles in the teacher's death.
Six teenagers were convicted for their roles in the teacher's death. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

Six teenagers have been found guilty in connection with the beheading of teacher Samuel Paty in France.

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Mr Paty had shown his class cartoons of the prophet of Islam during a debate on free expression.

Mr Paty, aged 47 at the time, was killed outside his school in 2020.

The attacker, Abdullah Anzorov, an 18-year-old Chechen refugee, was shot dead by police soon after the incident.

Five of the six teenagers on trial, aged between 14 and 15 at the time, stood accused of identifying the teacher to the attacker and helping monitor his exit from school.

They were all students at Mr Paty’s school.

The teenagers testified at a Paris juvenile court that they did not know Mr Paty would be killed.

Another defendant, 13 at the time, was found guilty of lying about the classroom debate.

She told her parents that Mr Paty had asked Muslim pupils to leave the class before showing the images, but it later emerged that she was not in the class and went on to tell investigators she had lied.

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Six teenagers were convicted for their roles in connection to Mr Paty's death.
Six teenagers were convicted for their roles in connection to Mr Paty's death. Picture: Alamy

Her father shared a video online calling for mobilisation against Mr Paty based on the false information from his daughter. He is one of eight adults who will face a separate trial next year.

He and a radical Islamic activist helped share messages against Mr Paty online which aggravated online anger against the teacher.

The five teenagers who identified Mr Paty to the attacker were convicted of involvement in a group preparing aggravated violence.

All of the teenagers, who cannot be named due to French laws regarding minors, were handed brief or suspended prison terms and will have to stay in school or work for the duration of their terms.

The sentences vary from 14 months to two years and are all suspended or commuted.

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