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French attitude/Law re intruders.


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Just a thought that crossed my mind this morning.what is the position in France legally on protecting self and family in the home environment in the event of unlawfull intrusion by burglars etc.Seems to have caused some problems past in the uk where action by the housholder has been deemed to be excessive.As most French seem to have access to firearms of one form or another,this would seem to be the action taken by them.Would like to know what the situation is in French law. Maude
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La légitime défense permet à une personne de se défendre

en usant de la force, sans que la justice puisse le lui reprocher. Pour

qu'elle soit qualifiée de légitime défense, la violence doit :

  • être nécessaire : il ne doit pas y avoir


  • être proportionnée à l'attaque,

  • correspondre à une nécessité impérieuse, que la

    victime n'ait pas le temps de recourir à la police, par exemple.


: La violence doit être utilisée pour se défendre immédiatement.

Il n'y a pas de légitime défense lorsque la riposte a lieu alors que

l'agresseur part, ou que la violence vise à prévenir une agression

future et incertaine.

source: http://vosdroits.service-public.fr/F1766.xhtml

One commentary I read said

"Mieux jugé par douze que porté par six"

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[quote user="Dog"]You gotta get through the garden past the dog and through the shutters only to find Pierre has a handgun. What has the average Frenchman got that's worth stealing anyway?[/quote]

Obviously from the amount of Brits and others who live in France I would suspect the answer to your question is, the life style? [:P]

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I think that the attitude may be at variance with the law.

The owner of one of the bars in our village heard noises from his bedroom,and looked out to see two "gitanes" trying to get into a lorry parked opposite. He then took his rifle from under the bed and took a pot shot.

The two would-be robbers fled, but one was badly hurt, and was left outside the hospital by his accomplice, and later died.

The bar owner was arrested by the gendarmes, but his customers converged on the gendarmerie in protest.

He was charged and tried for homicide volontaire, and is presently serving a long sentence, but there are still those who think he was within his rights.

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[quote user="lacote0_0"]I think that the attitude may be at variance with the law.[/quote]

Not at all, that individual was outside of what is allowed.

The legitimate defense allows a person to defend themselves while making use of force, without that justice can reproach it for him.  The violence has be necessary: there must not be an alternate. 

It must be proportional to the attack.

It must correspond to a pressing necessity, that the victim does not have the time to resort to to the police, for example. 

The violence must be used to defend the individual immediately.  There is not legitimate defense when retorts it takes place while the aggressor leaves, or that the violence aims to warn a future and uncertain aggression. 


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Lacote was referring to the title of the thread when saying that the French attitude may be at variance with the French law as witnessed by the protests outside the Gendermarie.

There was a program on two nights ago about the increase in armed robbery and how the bad guys are targetting smaller less well protected targets, convenience stores, petrol stations etc more so these days than the better protected banks and jewellers. They showed many victims of repeated armed holdups many of which were women owners/gerants of bibliotheques etc.

They showed a guy that had defended his-self with a gun (legally owned I believe) after repeated armed robberies at his petrol station, he shot the attacker 3 times, the last and fatal bullet being as the guy was leaving the premises, he has served his prison sentence, has had to leave his home area after reprisals, is pennieless and now has to work delivering the freeads at 65 years of age.

The guy said quite candidly I deeply regret what happened that day for the way that it has basculed many lives, the deceased and his family, mine and that of my family.  I have no regrets at all about the first two shots but regret that I fired the final, fatal one when he was outside my premises.

The general mood of the program and the discussion that followed was very very sympathetic to his plight and he was considered to be equally the victim of that terrible day that he did not instigate. 

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