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Three Moroccan minors cause havoc near Paris on crime spree

Minors of Moroccan origin have committed a number of crimes in Coulommiers, in the region of Seine-et-Marne near Paris, creating havoc.

Published: June 12, 2019, 1:59 pm

    Paris

    The facts go back to the last weekend. According to information from the tabloid Le Parisien, three young Moroccans, all minors without parents, are suspected of having committed two burglaries and a robbery in Coulommiers.

    These orphaned youths of foreign origin, have been wandering around Paris while committing crimes in the suburbs. First of all, they broke into a pharmacy and a pancake shop on the night from Friday to Saturday.

    According to the details obtained by le Parisien, the three miners also visited a villa on the promenade of the Bord-de-l’Eau on the morning of Saturday. Alerted by a passerby, the police were able to arrest the thugs who had hidden in the attic.

    Aged 14, 13 and 10 years old, they were placed in custody. The investigators found that the youngest of them has actually been the subject of a search warrant issued by the prosecutor’s office of the court of Créteil.

    The two others were released, one with a summons to appear before the court, and the other without facing prosecution for lack of evidence.

    The two young Moroccans who were released then took advantage of their freedom to turn to criminal activity right away.

    Around 9 pm, simulating a malaise, one of the youths violently attacked a 72-year-old man to steal his gold chain worth 10 000 euros. The police, however, were able to arrest the two individuals on the platform of the railway station. Once again in custody, they were presented to the juvenile judge on Monday, June 10 and were indicted.

    In France, the number of unaccompanied foreign minors has risen dramatically over the last two years: from 8 000 in 2016 to 15 000 in 2017 and, according to the latest figures from the Judiciary Youth Protection (PJJ), to 17 922 in 2018.

    The vast majority of these are boys – girls represent only 4-4,5 percent. And two-thirds of these unaccompanied youths are from sub-Saharan African countries.

    These minors have been wreaking havoc in the streets of Paris for three years now, and the authorities have no way to handle it.

    They are mostly found around the the district of the Goutte d’Or in the city. Groups of unaccompanied minors from Morocco are responsible for many violent robberies on the streets and the metro, reported Le Parisien last year.

    “With their peroxidized hair inspired by the world of football, we can see them from a distance. They are between 12 and 16 years old. The younger they are, the more they sniff glue,” says a police officer in Paris.

    According to the Ministry of the Interior, more than 1 200 arrests of minors claiming to be Moroccans were recorded between the beginning of 2018 and September in Paris, an increase of 52 percent compared to 2017.

    And nobody knows yet how they are organised. The investigations have not found direct links to immigration, intermediaries, or adult principals. On the other hand, most minors have maintain links, via social networks, with parents who have remained in Morocco.

    A police officer explained: “As they travel by subway, the underground has become their favorite hunting ground. Thefts occur everywhere in the entrances, in the corridors or in the trains.

    “They know how to grab a smartphone by the cord connected to the ear pieces, as they spot a passenger concentrating on his device’s screen.” And they grab laptops, jumping onto the platform just ahead of closing metro doors. “The victim [of the theft] remains inside [the train] stunned,” the officer added.

    The policeman said that they had no idea how to stop this problem. “When they are caught, they do not have any papers on them. Many do not speak French, or pretend not to speak it. The next day, we find them in the same places. They are released. And we go back undercover to try to stop them in flagrante delicto. It’s endless… “

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