Gdim Izik Trial: Moroccan Court Hands Jail Terms Ranging from Two Years to Life Imprisonment

Gdim Izik Trial: Moroccan Court Hands Jail Terms Ranging from Two Years to Life Imprisonment

An appeals court in Salé handed jail terms ranging from two-year imprisonment to life sentence to 23 individuals accused of killing 11 members of the Moroccan security forces during the dismantling of the Gdim Izik camp near Laayoune.

In 2013 a military court sentenced the defendants to jail terms ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment. Despite the fact that this trial respected international rules and regulations, Moroccan authorities decided to cancel the military tribunal sentences and referred the case to a civilian court following a recommendation made by the Moroccan national council of human rights.

In July 2016, the Court of Cassation ordered a civilian court to re-examine the case.

The court sentenced eight individuals to life in prison, while three received a sentence of 30 years in prison and five people were handed a 25-year jail sentence.

Three were handed 20-year prison sentence and two others received prison terms of six years and a half and four years and a half respectively. Two defendants who were on interim release were sentenced to two-year prison term.

The court also decided to drop the charge of “forming a criminal gang” against some of the accused while maintaining the charges of attacking security agents while performing their duties.

Several national and foreign observers and attorneys attended the proceedings in the Salé court before a civil magistrate, ensuring that the defendants get a fair trial.

Among the foreign observers who were present there were representatives of NGOs and human rights watchdogs from Germany, Denmark, Spain, Belgium, Italy and Switzerland.

Bringing the Gdim Izik events before a civilian court has earned Morocco the praise of several international rights watchdogs, saying the move shows the North African Kingdom’s attachment to the Rule of Law.

The families of the victims of Gdim Izik events had set up an association to defend the rights of the law enforcement agents who lost their lives on duty.

The association had said the retrial was an opportunity to highlight the sufferings endured by the victims’ families.

According to the news portal le360, the families of the victims said they were “satisfied” with the verdict and hoped they would win the case they lodged for indemnification for the serious prejudice they suffered.


Share This