Six teens found guilty in connection to Islamist beheading of French teacher

A high school history teacher was beheaded by an Islamic refugee in a Paris suburb on Oct. 16, 2020. Six teenagers who had a hand in Samuel Paty’s savage execution were convicted Friday by a French court.

Among the convicts was a Muslim student who spread lies about the nature of the teacher’s Oct. 6 lesson on freedom of expression as well as other teens who helped set up the bloody ambush. Adults suspected of complicity in the terrorist murder, including the Moroccan father of the untruthful teen, are set for trial in 2024.

Although some justice has ostensibly been meted out, it appears to be of little consolation to a country struggling with radicalism and the apparent fallout of multiculturalism.

The Islamist murder plot

Paty, 47, was a teacher at Collège Bois-d’Aulne, in a suburb northwest of Paris. On Oct. 6, 2020, he showed Charlie Hebdo caricatures of Mohamed to his class during a lesson on freedom of expression, posing the question, “To be or not to be Charlie?”

The lesson was timely since Charlie Hebdo, a satirical magazine, had been targeted by Islamic terrorists multiple times in recent memory, including the previous month when two employees were stabbed outside its headquarters. In 2015, two Islamic terrorists gunned down 12 people at the magazine’s headquarters. In 2011, the magazine’s office was firebombed.

One of Paty’s students, a then-13-year-old Muslim girl, was suspended that month for skipping school. Rather than own up to her truancy, the Guardian reported that the teen told her father, Brahim Chnina, that she had been ousted for confronting Paty over the freedom of expression class.

According to the yarn she spun, Paty dismissed Muslim students from the class so that he could show non-Muslims “a photograph of the Prophet naked.” She further claimed the upon confronting Paty, the teacher had her suspended.

Chnina, an Islamist preacher who migrated from the 99% Sunni Muslim nation of Morocco, subsequently took to social media to condemn Paty and demand that he be fired.

Abdullakh Anzorov, an 18-year-old Islamist migrant from Chechnya, picked up on the enraged father’s cues and began plotting the murder. Prosecutors indicated that Anzorov traveled 50 miles from Normandy to Conflans-Sainte-Honorine to assassinate Paty, reported the BBC.

Five other teens, between the ages of 13 and 15 at the time, then helped Anzorov identify and ambush Paty. The terrorist paid them roughly $327 for their services.

With the help of the teens, Anzorov tracked down Paty as he walked home from work and used a cleaver to hack off his head. Witnesses reportedly heard the attacker shout, “Allahu Akbar,” during the commission of the assassination.

Police responded to the scene and successfully gunned down the terrorist, but not before he could boast of the slaying on Twitter.

BBC indicated 15 people were taken into custody following the murder, including Anzorov’s parents, brother, and grandfather. Additionally, various Muslim organizations that allegedly trafficked in outrage over the false claims concerning Pety’s lesson were scrutinized. The Collective Against Islamophobia in France was, for instance, deemed an “enemy of the state” by the country’s interior minister.

First set of convictions

The teenage girl who spread the initial lie about Paty was revealed in court not to have been in class during the lesson. She was found guilty Friday of making false accusation charges and slanderous comments, reported the Guardian.

For her hand in Paty’s demise, the untruthful teen was given an 18-month suspended prison sentence.

The five teens who helped Anzorov with his murder plot were found guilty criminal conspiracy with intent to cause violence. Four of the facilitators were given suspended sentences. The fifth was sentenced to six months in prison but may ultimately serve time on the outside under electronic surveillance.

Virginie Le Roy, a lawyer representing the victim’s family, told the French press, “The role of the minors was fundamental in the sequence of events that led to his assassination.”

Eight adults will be tried next year for their alleged hand in the assassination.

In addition to Chnina and members of the terrorist’s family, Anzorov’s friends, identified as Azim E. and Naim B., will be tried for alleged “complicity in a terrorist murder,” according to France 24. The duo are said to have helped the killer pick out and buy the murder weapon.

Growing concern

The convictions are unlikely to ease tensions in France, where the struggle with what the New York Times characterized in 2021 as a failure of integration appears to have come to a head.

Recently, Muslim students at a school west of Paris raged over their art teacher’s exhibition of a Renaissance painting portraying a Greek mythology story and featuring scantily clad women, reported the Daily Mail. Facing threats from Islamists, various teachers went on strike.

This summer, the country faced race riots over the police-involved shooting of an Algerian teen that were almost as destructive to the European nation as the 2020 BLM riots were to the United States.

Last month, a gang of youths who made clear they were out to “stab white people” did just that at a French village’s annual winter ball, butchering a 16-year-old boy. The attacks prompted major protests critical of the nation’s immigration policy.

The French regime has in recent days unsuccessfully attempted to pass legislation that would clamp down on illegal immigration, toughen French language requirements, speed up the deportation process, and make it more challenging for foreign nationals to obtain residency papers, reported the New York Times.

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