Ahead of the judgment in the trial of Martine Landry, a 73-year-old woman who faces up to five years in prison and a fine of €30,000 on charges of “aiding” asylum seekers after she helped two 15-year-olds from Guinea reach a police station in France, Amnesty International’s Europe Researcher, Elisa de Pieri, said:
“Martine Landry has done nothing wrong and has committed no crime. By taking two children to a police station so they could be registered and cared for as minors, she acted compassionately and within the law.
“Dragging her before the court on surreal charges makes a mockery of justice. Instead, efforts by individuals and NGOs to help people seeking safety should be lauded, defended and celebrated rather than criminalized.
“In the wake of the 6 July ruling by France’s Constitutional Council that humanitarian activities should not be criminalized, all charges against Martine Landry should be dropped. French law should also be amended in accordance with international law to ensure only smuggling for material benefit is regarded as an offence.”