PARIS – Two Jewish brothers claimed they were abducted briefly and beaten by several men in an incident that ended with one brother having his finger sawed off by an assailant.
The brothers were hospitalised in what was described as a state of shock following the incident last Tuesday night in Bondy.
A case report published last Thursday by the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism (BNVCA), based on a police complaint by the alleged victims, did not specify their medical condition.
The kippah-wearing brothers, whose father is a Jewish leader in Bondy, were forced off the main road by another vehicle onto a side street, according to the BNVCA report. While the vehicle was in motion, the driver and a passenger shouted anti-Semitic slogans at the brothers that included “Dirty Jews, You’re going to die!” the father told the BNVCA.
The vehicle forced the brothers to stop their car, and they were surrounded by several men whom they described as having a Middle Eastern appearance. The men came out of a hookah cafe on to the side street, according to the case report published by the website JSSNews.
The alleged attackers surrounded the brothers, then kicked and punched them repeatedly while threatening that they would be murdered if they moved. One of the alleged attackers then sawed off the finger of one of the brothers.
Meanwhile, French prosecutors have dropped hate crime charges in the case of four men suspected of rape and robbery at a suburban Paris home they acknowledged was targeted because it belonged to Jews.
The draft indictment charges the four with gang rape, armed robbery, abduction and conspiracy to commit a crime, but contains no reference to violence on ethnic or religious grounds, the Le Parisien newspaper reported last week.
The BNVCA published a statement on Wednesday speaking of its “concern and indignation over the decision taken by a novice judge” to “delete the aggravated circumstances”. According to the watchdog, the judge who handled the case previously had included the hate charges in a draft indictment.
The 2014 rape in Creteil allegedly occurred while one armed suspect guarded the woman’s boyfriend and another took his credit card to a cash machine. The victims said the assailants hurled anti-Semitic insults at them.
Both former prime minister Manuel Valls and then-interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve saw the incident as glaringly anti-Semitic. Valls wrote on Twitter that “the horror of Creteil is a deplorable example of how the fight against anti-Semitism is a constant fight.”