The surgeon’s lawyer prosecuted before the assizes in the first part of an extraordinary case of rapes and pedophile assaults, said on Friday to AFP to be “perplexed” on the “serenity of the debates” if the trial in a month to Saintes (Charente-Maritime) had to be public.
“This non-stop publicity for 6 months (…) of a file which must be judged in a month makes me a little perplexed as to the serenity of the debates in the event that they are public,” warned Thibaut Kurzawa, lawyer by former surgeon Joël Le Scouarnec, when the question of an in camera divides the civil parties.
“In the event that these debates were to be public, we can fear overflows,” said the lawyer, citing a context of “public relentlessness” and “the climate of hatred” on his client, the object of a stunt revelations about his long pedophile journey, against a background of omerta.
Suspected of hundreds of sexual abuse of minors during a 30-year career, Joël Le Scouarnec, 69, is scheduled to appear on March 13, 16 and 17 before the Assize Court of Charente-Maritime in Saintes in a first installment. He was accused of sexual abuse by four very young underage victims at the time – two nieces and a patient, all now adults, and the daughter of his neighbors in Jonzac (Charente-Maritime), 9 years old today, who l had denounced in 2017. He acknowledges attacks but denies the rapes.
A few weeks before the hearing announced as very media-friendly, the trial conditions, whether or not the public and the press are present, are uncertain.
The parents of the little girl announced Sunday to the JDD that they demanded a trial in broad daylight, unlike the two nieces of the surgeon who said on February 9 to the Parisian that they wanted to see him tried in camera for abuses dating back to 1990s in Loches (Indre-et-Loire). If the latter maintained this position, the closed session would be automatically ordered to open the hearing.
The story of the young girl in 2017 had put investigators on the trail of a case of pedophilia of unequaled scope which led to the opening of a second procedure, still in progress in Lorient. To date, investigators have identified 349 other potential victims of the surgeon, 246 of whom had filed complaints on February 11, according to the prosecution.