Correspondent in Paris
Juvenile delinquency, that of minors, from robbery with a knife to collaborating in terrorist crimes, has grown significantly in France during the first nine months of the pandemic.
Six of the fourteen people charged with alleged crimes of complicity in a terrorist murder and association of criminals, in the case of the professed Samuel Paty, beheaded on October 16, are minors 13, 14 and 15 years old.
A 13-year-old girl was arrested on Friday morning in Béziers, an Occitan town near Spain, after having threatened to kill one of her teachers with a knife.
In Lyon, in central France, a 15 year old he was arrested last week at an institute for having threatened to “cut off the head” of one of his teachers.
In Nice, in the heart of the Côte d’Azur, a 17-year-old girl was detained for days for harassing and threatening her teachers with death through social media.
In mid-November, various gangs of minors gained a certain “celebrity” for attacking with violence (stones and batons) to fire and police units providing emergency services in Montceau-les-Mines (Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region, to the east).
Laurent Gebler, President of the French Association of Juvenile and Family Magistrates (AFMJF), comments on the process of the increase in juvenile and adolescent delinquency in these terms: “Juvenile delinquency grew significantly in 2019. All the indicators suggest that the problem has worsened this year. And, as an alarming detail, the violence of minors grows in an ever more violent terrain: sexual assaults, violence related to drug trafficking, without forgetting traditional crime, attacks against authority, violence of all kinds against teachers, professors and bus drivers ».
In the “Suburb” o periferia In Paris and the large cities of France, youth gangs clashes and attacks against police patrols are “traditional”. The law enforcement unions have been underlining, for months, the growing presence of minors.
Notable increase compared to other years
Several young people from this niche of the population were involved in 4,333 of the “common” crimes (physical violence, robberies, threats, etc.) committed in France during 2019. A growth of 29.7% compared to 2017, when crimes committed by minors “only” amounted to 3,340 cases. These figures could grow significantly after the waves of “savagery” denounced by the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, last summer.
It is always, globally, a well-rooted youth violence in the periphery of Paris and the big cities. Clandestine immigration has created problems of a new kind: the emergence of minors without family, wandering and without a fixed address, creating problems of a new type in some large cities, such as Bordeaux.
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