Three on trial in France over assault on Brigitte Macron’s relative

The Jean Trogneux chocolate shop in the centre of Amiens was already under police protection – Copyright AFP DENIS CHARLET

Three men are to be go on trial in France on Monday on charges of beating up the great-nephew of French first lady Brigitte Macron last month outside her family’s chocolate shop.

The attack on Jean-Baptiste Trogneux was widely condemned by French politicians, including President Emmanuel Macron who called it “unacceptable” while pointing the finger at his opponents whose “verbal violence” he suggested had encouraged the assault.

It came during soaring tensions in France over his government’s pension reform, which the president signed into law without a parliamentary vote.

The attack on Trogneux in the northern town of Amiens on May 15 came on the sidelines of an unsanctioned demonstration against the government’s pension reform.

Aged 20, 22 and 34, the trio were to be tried in a fast-track process two days after the attack but their lawyers asked for more time to prepare a defence.

The trial is due to get underway at midday GMT.

Brigitte Macron’s family have run the Jean Trogneux chocolate shop in the centre of her home city of Amiens for six generations.

Her great-nephew was returning to his apartment above the store when he was recognised by the protesters, who left him with several broken ribs, a head injury and a hand wound, according to his father.

According to his lawyer Franck Delahousse, he tried to defend the shop window which had been previously targeted during demonstration. The shop has already for several years been under police protection.

Among the defendants, who already have criminal records for violence and assault, the youngest, Florian C., is illiterate, while the oldest, Yoan L., is under legal guardianship.

Marc Blondet, the lawyer of the third defendant Adrien F., said his client can barely read or write.

“These are young people who have been on a chaotic journey, and have special or psychological needs,” he added.

Four other people arrested in this case were released after questioning. A 16-year-old girl, who has also been charged, will go on trial at a later date at a juvenile court.

Both Brigitte Macron, 70, and Emmanuel Macron, 45, hail from Amiens, the town where they met while she was his drama teacher at a private school. She was married and had three children but subsequently divorced from her first husband.

Three on trial in France over assault on Brigitte Macron’s relative
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