Friday, January 20, 2017

The human rights Defender denounces the controls “facies” – The World

The constitutional Council must decide, Tuesday, 24 January, on the checks of identity, a police practice that would target twenty times more young people from visible minorities.

Jacques Toubon, in July 2016.

So that the constitutional Council must decide, Tuesday, 24 January, on the identity checks, the Defender of rights shall publish, on Friday, a survey that confirms that this police practice is designed especially for young men from visible minorities, sending the idea of controls ” facies “. Following the work conducted by the human rights Defender in early 2016 with a representative sample of more than 5,000 people – a first at the national level, ” 80 % of the people corresponding to the profile young man perceived as black or arab say they have been checked in the past five years (compared to 16 % for the rest of the respondents) “. These profiles are therefore ” twenty times more ” of the probability of being controlled.

Jacques Toubon recalls that the identity check ” not the subject of any traceability, making it impossible to determine precisely the contours, or to assess its efficiency and effectiveness “. Just does one estimate, according to parliamentary reports, that many millions of checks are carried out each year and approximately 95 % of them result in nothing.

However, these controls have a real impact. If ” 82.2% of the respondents stated they were completely or rather trust the police “, this proportion falls to less than 50 % of the people controlled more than five times in the past five years. 76,6 % of them also say ” not having received any explanation, “ on the ground of the control and less than half to qualify as the polite police behavior (compared to 70.7 % of the general population controlled at least once). Breaches of ethics are rare, but ” 8.1% of the controlled persons to declare that they have been abused, and 7.1 % insulted at the last control “. The informal ” tu ” is more common, ” reported by 16.3% of respondents, “.

” Suspected foreign “

As in 2012, the Defender of rights reiterates its wish that to be kept a record of the controls. This campaign promise had been quickly abandoned by François Hollande and his interior minister of the time, Manuel Valls.

While in November 2015 the Court of cassation has sentenced for the first time in the State for controls that are discriminatory, the constitutional Council prepares to decide on two priority issues of constitutionality (QPC) : the identity checks, the entry and stay of foreigners. According to the applicants, supported at the hearing on 17 January in front of the Board by a slew of associations (Gisti, trade Union of the magistrature, Syndicat des avocats de France…), the combination of these two laws (on the controls and on foreign) leads, in practice, controls on facies.

Read also : Controls on facies : after the condemnation of the State, the police will have to change its practices

sections of the code of criminal procedure (articles 78-2 and 78-2-2) allow prosecutors to require identity checks in areas and for a duration limited have been validated in 1993 by the constitutional Council. But in 2012, France has pulled out of the penal code, at the request of the european Court of human rights, violations of the right of residence of foreigners, which now fall under the purview of the administrative courts.

Therefore, the identity checks required by a prosecutor for the purpose of preventing an offence should no longer be used to control the regularity of the stay of ” suspected aliens “,, as it is no more an offence. Gold, ” said the lawyer, Ruben Garcia, they are, at least to Paris, always decided in some neighborhoods such as Barbès and carried out by the unit specialised in illegal immigration. The passers-by who appear to be foreign controlled.

The thirty control procedures on requisition reported to the Council illustrate this ” general practice “. And legal disputes are ineffective. Xavier Pottier, for the government, recalled that the legislator had wished that the identity checks are not widespread or random. The constitutional Council shall, if the infringement of the equality before the law are the result of an incorrect application of the texts or of their unconstitutionality.


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