The 6 French nationals convicted in Chad of trying to kidnap to Europe more than a hundred children they said were Darfurian orphans -- but who, as we've posted, were in fact Chadian children with families -- received "substitute" sentences from a French judge today.
A Chadian court had sentenced Zoe's Ark workers Eric Breteau, Emilie Lelouch, Alain Péligat, Philippe van Winkelberg, Dominique Aubry, and Nadia Merimi to 8 years of forced labor. They were then transferred, pursuant to a France-Chad treaty signed in 1976, back to Paris. There le tribunal correctionnel de Créteil gave them, as a substitute, 8 years in French prison. The court did not seem to have been moved by defense counsel's argument "stigmatizing" the Chadian judgment as having been "produced by a 'totalitarian' country."