The Moldavian couple arrested after tagging Stars of David on a wall in the 10th arrondissement of Paris were ordered to do so by “an individual in Russia”, Europe 1 has reported.
The couple were arrested for “degradation aggravated by the fact that it was committed because of their origin or religion”, said the public prosecutor, the French media reported.
Moldovans arrested after tagging stars of David on a school
The two Moldovans arrested after tagging stars of David on a school in the 10th arrondissement were commissioned by an “individual in Russia”, according to Europe 1. Last Friday, a 33-year-old man and a 29-year-old woman, both born in Moldova, were arrested and placed in administrative detention, the public prosecutor’s office said on Wednesday.
The couple were arrested for “degradation aggravated by the fact that it was committed because of their origin or religion”, the public prosecutor’s office said. They had been reported by a neighbour who had seen the man and woman “tagging a blue star”, which was “erased the same day”, it added. The couple then “declared that they had committed this offence on the orders of a third party”.
Around sixty Stars of David were tagged in Paris
Both did not have permission to stay in France and were taken to the administrative detention centre, according to the public prosecutor. The legal proceedings were therefore closed because of a “different kind of sanction”, i.e. “their deportation from France”, it explained.
Around sixty Stars of David, symbols of the Jewish religion and the State of Israel, were stencilled in blue on the facades of several buildings in the 14th arrondissement of Paris. The public prosecutor’s office said that “the perpetrators of the multiple tags observed on Tuesday (had) not yet been identified”.
Growth of anti-Semitic acts in France
Since 7 October, the start of the war between Israel and Hamas, “857 anti-Semitic acts” have been recorded in France and “425” people have been arrested, French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said on Tuesday.
The Paris public prosecutor’s office said it had opened an investigation after stars of David were found on several buildings, notably in the 15th arrondissement of Paris. The investigation was opened for “damage to other people’s property aggravated by the fact that it was committed because of origin, race, ethnicity or religion”.
This offence carries a maximum penalty of four years imprisonment and a €30,000 fine. Since the attack on Israel by Hamas on 7 October, 2,500 reports of anti-Semitic acts have been received in France on the Pharos reporting platform, according to the Ministry of the Interior.
On Sunday, the French Minister of Justice Eric Dupond-Moretti reported that more than 400 people had been arrested for these “anti-Semitic acts”.