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France: Acquittal of pensioner for showing compassion to children shows solidarity is not a crime

    July 13, 2018

    Responding to the decision of a French court to acquit Martine Landry, a 73-year-old woman, charged with helping two 15-year-old asylum seekers in France, Gauri van Gulik, Amnesty International’s Europe Director, said:

    “Today’s decision is not only a victory for justice but also for common sense. Martine Landry did nothing wrong. By taking two young people to a police station so they could be registered and cared for as minors, she acted compassionately and within the law.

    “Whilst it is a relief that Martine Landry’s ordeal is now over, she should never have been charged in the first place.

    “In the wake of today’s decision and the 6 July ruling by France’s Constitutional Council that humanitarian activities should not be criminalized, French law should be amended to ensure only smuggling for material benefit is regarded as an offence.”

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