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“Eric Drouet never called for violence” the lawyer of the “yellow vest” responds to the accusations of Castaner

@ Eric Drouet, Paris. (MICHEL STOUPAK / AFP)

Paris – The Interior Minister “Christophe Castaner” wants the case to be brought against Eric Drouet after he told the publication of a statement calling for “the uprising” on social media. His lawyer reacts to the accusation.

Will Eric Drouet be investigated by the French police again? Interviewed by BFMTV on Tuesday (January 29th), Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said he would take legal action, demanding that Eric Drouet be prosecuted for a statement issued by his Facebook group, “La France en anger!!!”.

His text, calling for the “uprising”, was written after the serious injury to the eye of another key figure of an “yellow vest”, Jerome Rodrigues, visibly caused by a Flash Ball being launched by the police. “This is a call for insurrection, the indignation of the minister on BFMTV. This last statement is in my view of an criminal offence.” A charge that denied Me KhĂ©ops Lara, Eric Drouet’s lawyer. He answered “franceinfo’s” questions.

Jerome Rodrigues, one of the leaders of the yellow vest movement, lies on the street after getting wounded in the eye during clashes with riot police in Paris during an anti-government demonstration called by the Yellow Vests “Gilets Jaunes” movement on January 26, 2019. (Photo by Zakaria ABDELKAFI / AFP)

Christophe Castaner French minister of interior wants “Eric Drouet” to be prosecuted for releasing a statement calling for an uprising, citing Article 40 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. What does this mean concretely?

Kheops Lara: The lawyer of “Eric Drouet” It’s almost a complaint. In fact, Mr. Castaner asks the justice department to investigate the statements made in his release of the “France angry!!!” on the Facebook group. I would also like to remind you that this is a collective statement by the directors of the group, including my client Eric Drouet.

In a Facebook Live, Monday, Eric Drouet also claims not to be the author of this text calling for an uprising. Is this your line of defence?

This is a press release that has been posted with his name. As is sometimes the case in collectives, press releases articles to quickly and they do not the have time to re-read the facts by everyone. But my client will answer on it without any problem. He is also waiting another very firmly situation for his calls for a previous text before court. We are extremely serene because there is no call for violence in this release.

Christophe Castaner has denounced a “call to insurrection”, saying that this call can be interpreted as an incentive to attack the police. What do you answer?

The word “insurrection” does not appear in this release. Words are important, you have to be careful. In this document, he calls for an “uprising”, but this is not at all any time a call for violence. He invites on the contrary to resist peacefully by protesting, by forming blockages. My client never called for violence, neither today nor ever before.

It’s the world upside down. When we see what happened to Jerome Rodrigues [wounded in the eye during a demonstration], we can see that “Eric Drouet” is never at the places where violence appeared in Paris. It is this indecent what the minister says after what happened this weekend. I have seen my client and, if an new lawsuits would be brought against him, we will not hesitate, on our side, to file a complaint against “Christophe Castaner” for slanderous denunciation and police violence.