The trial of the defendants began on Monday. They face life imprisonment.
Tortured in front of a camera, stabbed 74 times and left in agony: Ahmed Kourak suffered a real ordeal on the night of March 2 to 3, 2019. His lifeless body, tied up, was only found in an apartment in the Croix-Rousse district, in the 1st arrondissement of Lyon, only two days later.
This Monday opened behind closed doors, before the Assize Court for minors of Lyon, the trial of the three individuals suspected of having inflicted this abuse on him. The defendants who took place in the box are prosecuted for “murder preceded by acts of torture or barbarism and intentional violence”. They had been arrested by Spanish police in Valencia shortly after the incident. A fourth man, suspected of having shot the video, will be tried in May in juvenile court.
Algerian aged 28 at the time of the events, Ahmed Kourak knew his torturers, of the same nationality as him. The victim had lived in the Lyon region for three years and had been convicted several times for “aggravated theft” and “violence”.
The mobile in question
For Ahmed Kourak’s family, the trial should shed light on a major mystery: what could have led minors to commit such acts?
The thesis of a settling of accounts linked to the theft or borrowing of a mobile phone, brandished by the defendants, does not convince the civil parties, particularly marked by the violence of this case. Because the sequences of torture were transmitted directly to relatives of the victim via Messenger.
“To take the life of a person who is 28 years old, who could have had a project, a family life, to get married like everyone else… It’s very, very hard to accept it, lamented Nour, niece of Ahmed Kourak, at the microphone of BFM Lyon, her voice full of sobs. It’s very, very, very hard, especially for his family. We can’t do it. They destroyed a family. Today today, we are here to have the answers to our questions. Because taking a person’s life for a phone, we don’t believe in it.”
Jean-Baudouin Shibaba, lawyer for the civil parties, judges for his part that “the motive is derisory”. “According to their words, he engages, it would be for a laptop. This is the reason why we are not ready to understand if it is the only mobile, or if there is another mobile. One wonders if it was not horror movie fans who wanted to show that they were capable of doing this kind of thing”.
The debates of the day took place under the eyes of a second victim. The 28-year-old man managed to slip away from the attackers and escape.
A new painful moment is looming for this victim and those close to Ahmed Kourak. The court will proceed on Tuesday to the presentation of the facts. Then will come the time for the interrogation of the three minors. Solicited by BFM Lyon, the defense lawyers do not wish to speak.
The verdict is expected Friday. The defendants face life imprisonment.