'Carlos the Jackal' on trial for third life sentence

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Venezuela-born Ilich Ramírez Sánchez was back in a French court on Monday. The 67-year-old, better known as Carlos the Jackal from his notoriety as a political terrorist, now faces trial for an attack in 1974 on a Parisian shopping centre. The attack killed two and injured 34.

No one has executed more people than me in the Palestinian resistance

—Ilich Ramírez Sánchez

File:Carlos the Jackal.jpg

File photo of Carlos the Jackal.
Image: KGB.
(Image missing from Commons: image; log)

Ramírez Sánchez, who was being defended by his lawyer and long-term partner Isabelle Coutant-Peyre, called the trial a "gross manipulation of justice" and pleaded innocent to the charge of throwing a hand grenade into the centre in 1974. He gave a long statement to the court in which he proclaimed "No-one has executed more people than me in the Palestinian resistance [...] In all the fighting, there were collateral victims, it's unfortunate". When asked for his profession he stated he was a "professional revolutionary".

While Ramírez Sánchez's lawyer, Coutant-Peyre, denounced the trial as pointless, victims' lawyer George Holleaux said, "The victims have been waiting so long for Ramírez to be judged and convicted. Their wounds have never healed."

Ramírez Sánchez already faces two life sentences for convictions of murders and attacks that took place in France during the '70s and '80s committed in the name of the Palestinian cause or communist revolution. If found guilty, Ramírez Sánchez faces a third life sentence.