French warrant for fugitive Italian terrorist

30th August 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Aug 30 (AFP) - The Paris appeals court on Monday issued a warrant for the arrest of Cesare Battisti, an Italian ex-revolutionary fighting extradition from France to face jail for murder who missed a recent check-in with police.

PARIS, Aug 30 (AFP) - The Paris appeals court on Monday issued a warrant for the arrest of Cesare Battisti, an Italian ex-revolutionary fighting extradition from France to face jail for murder who missed a recent check-in with police.  

The former left-wing extremist, who was sentenced in absentia in Italy to life in prison for four murders and whose extradition is currently under appeal, missed his weekly check-in with French parole officers 10 days ago.  

Last week, the French newspaper Liberation reported that Battisti had fled France, enraging officials in Italy, but Battisti said in a letter made public by his attorneys that he was still in his adopted homeland and would not leave.  

But the court decided to follow a request by public prosecutors and revoke Battisti's conditional release, granted in March provided that he report to police once a week.   "The justice system cannot be satisfied when someone thumbs their nose at the courts like this," the court said.  

Neither Battisti - who works as a concierge in a Paris apartment building and has also earned a name as a successful crime writer - nor his attorneys were present at the hearing.  

Prosecutors say he no longer lives at his former address.  

The former member of the Armed Proletarians for Communism fled to France in 1990, benefitting from a policy of then Socialist president Francois Mitterrand under which Italian left-wing extremists could stay in France if they renounced their extremist past.  

Three years later Battisti was convicted in absentia by a court in Milan for carrying out or planning four murders in 1978 and 1979, including the killing of a prison guard in the town of Udine and of a policeman in Milan.  

The Cour de Cassation, France's highest appeals court, is due to review Battisti's request to fight his extradition on September 29.

 

© AFP

 

Subject: French news

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