French shooting suspect lived, married in Britain: reports

22nd November 2013, Comments 0 comments

The French suspect arrested over this week's shootings in Paris lived in Britain for 13 years and got married there, reports in British newspapers said Friday.

Abdelhakim Dekhar, 48, came to Britain after serving a jail sentence for his role in a multiple murder in France in the 1990s, several newspapers said.

He initially moved to Ilford in east London and worked in a restaurant in a shopping centre before returning briefly to France, the Times newspaper said, without citing sources.

He then married a Turkish student in Redbridge, northeast London, in February 2000, the Times and London's Evening Standard newspapers both reported.

The Times said he had lived in Britain for 13 years.

Dekhar's sister, Farida Dekhar-Powell, lives in the commuter town of Shenfield, in Essex, southeast England, and is a French teacher, the Evening Standard said.

"I stopped talking to him 20 years ago. He is not part of my life and that's how it stays," she told the Evening Standard.

His British links initially emerged on Thursday when French prosecutors said that a man who first met Dekhar 13 years ago in London had helped lead them to the fugitive.

Dekhar was arrested on Wednesday after a major manhunt following a shooting at the Liberation newspaper that left a photographer's assistant seriously hurt, and a separate incident where shots were fired at the Societe Generale bank headquarters.

He was found in a vehicle in an underground parking lot in a northwestern Paris suburb. He was in a semi-conscious state after apparently trying to commit suicide.

Dekhar was convicted in 1998 of buying a gun used in a deadly October 1994 shooting attack by student Florence Rey and her lover Audry Maupin, who moved in left-wing circles.

He was sentenced to four years but was released soon afterwards, having already served his time in pre-trial detention.

© 2013 AFP

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