The trial in camera of a policeman who did not immediately give information about the attack at the Jewish Museum to the anti-terrorism cell of the federal police authorities, opened at the criminal court in Brussels on Thursday. Both the prosecutor and the suspect’s counsel refused to comment after the court session. Sentencing is scheduled for October 22nd.
Immediately after images were broadcast showing the perpetrator taking a Kalashnikov with a folding stick out of one of his bags, a federal policeman working in Brussels for the department in charge of informants received a lead from an informer who said he recognised the weapon as one which had been traded by gangsters recently.
His boss, who heard the information with him, allegedly asked him to immediately write a confidential report to warn the anti-terrorism cell as soon as possible, which the policeman took too long to do. The alleged perpetrator, Mehdi Nemmouche, had left for France in the meantime.
It turned out that the weapon described by the informer was not the one used in the attack, but the prosecutor decided to prosecute the policeman anyway.
The closed-door trial started on Thursday. The defendant is facing a 1 to 6-month sentence and/or a 156 to 3,000-euro fine.
Lars Andersen (Source: Belga)