Criminal Law

28 February 2020 | Charlotte Desfontaines

Acquittal of Cardinal Philippe Barbarin: A victory for Soulier Avocats

On January 30, 2020, the Court of Appeals of Lyon acquitted Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, defended in particular by Mr. André Soulier, of the charge of failing to report abuses with regard to the sexual assaults and rapes committed by Mr. Father Bernard Preynat on boy scouts he supervised between 1972 and 1991.

In this high-profile case, the judges of the Court of Appeals decided to overturn the first-instance judgement handed down by the Criminal Court of Lyon which had convicted Philippe Barbarin. Probably less receptive to the emotional turmoil legitimately created by this case, the appellate judges based their decision primarily on the strict application of the rule of law.

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30 January 2020 | Charlotte Desfontaines

Secrecy of pre-trial investigations and inquiries: A fundamental principal undermined by social changes

In today’s increasingly information dominated society, the National Assembly’s Law Committee has asked MPs Xavier Breton and Didier Paris to carry out a fact-finding mission on the secrecy of pre-trial investigations and inquiries.

In their report published in December 2019, they rightly point out the inconsistencies that surround this principle, which is fundamental, but which is undermined by the legitimate need for information. Beyond this observation, the rapporteurs draw up a list of recommendations in order to adapt the secrecy of pre-trial investigations and inquiries to the evolutions of today’s society.

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30 August 2018 | Justine Cheytion

Focus on employers’ new obligation to report the identity of employees who commit road traffic offenses

Since January 1, 2017, employers have the obligation to report to the competent authorities the identity of employees who commit certain types of road traffic offenses whilst driving a company car, failing which penalties will be applied. How is this new rule enforced in practice and what are the actual implications of this new obligation? […]

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27 April 2018 | Justine Cheytion

Marlène Schiappa’s bill against sexual and sexist violence as a response to the “#balancetonporc” movement (Part 1)

Sexual offenses have rocketed into the limelight in recent months. The societal phenomenon #balancetonporc (#balancetonporc is the French equivalent of #MeToo) has led Marlène Schiappa, French Minister of State for Gender Equality, to work on a draft bill to combat sexual and sexist behaviors. With the strengthening of the existing legislative arsenal and the creation […]

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30 August 2017 | Justine Cheytion

Theft of information

In a decision dated June 28, 2017, the Criminal Chamber of the Cour de cassation (French Supreme Court) specified that “free access to personal information on a company’s IT network does not mean that such information may not be fraudulently appropriated by any means of reproduction”. This landmark decision revives the debate on the tricky […]

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