A 43-year-old Algerian migrant, notorious for his many thefts throughout Paris, was tried and sentenced to three years in prison on Tuesday by the Paris Criminal Court.
Prosecutors, who described the 43-year-old Nabil B. as the “most active thief in Paris,” was arrested on Nov. 16 by officers from the anti-crime unit (BAC) at a metro station in the center of Paris. The suspect was already wanted for a string of thefts at the time of his arrest.
Investigators began to open a specific procedure to group his various cases together before presenting him before the court. Prosecutors convicted him of at least a dozen high-profile thefts, including a case involving €70,000 stolen from a hotel in the 14th arrondissement on Sept. 10.
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In what may have been one of his most audacious crimes, Nabil B. was also convicted of having stolen a handbag from Frédérique Camilleri, the police chief of the Bouches-du-Rhône. He then used her bank card in “contactless” mode to make a number of purchases.
“He is a thief who knows the tricks of the judicial system well and won’t hesitate to do anything to end up in the hospital and avoid being questioned by the police for too long,” a source from Paris police headquarters told French news outlet Actu17 in November last year.
When the Algerian’s house was raided by police, they found a number of stolen objects, including a saxophone worth €7,000, a dozen handbags, and €8,600 in cash.
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He is also facing another trial in March of this year for stealing a computer from a soldier during a NATO meeting at the Cercle National des Armées on July 15. The stolen computer sparked diplomatic tensions that led to accusations of espionage. France was also lambasted by other allied countries for failing to ensure security at the meeting, especially in light of the war in Ukraine. Nabil B., who was arrested a few days after the crime, is accused of slipping past a number of soldiers and entering a conference room to steal the computer.
The Algerian is known to the police under a wide range of aliases including David B., who Nabil B. claimed was an Israeli citizen. He has already been arrested many times in the past for his thefts and sentenced to prison, but the Algerian, a serial repeat offender, has shown no signs he is slowing down.
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French President Emmanuel Macron admitted last year that half the crimes in Paris are committed by foreigners; however, this number may be far higher according to French author and essayist Laurent Obertone.
“Migrants and the descendants of migrants are responsible for two-thirds of criminality because criminality and delinquency are tied in the majority (of cases) to those with an immigration background. One can say that ethnic statistics are forbidden and so on, one should not talk about this, and we should only speak of the small criminal minority and that is all,” said Obertone last year while appearing on French television channel CNews.
“I have to point out that (Interior Minister Gérald) Darmanin speaks of crimes committed by foreigners. I, on the other hand, was speaking about the criminality of individuals with a migrant background,” said Obertone. “This means not only those who are foreign nationals, but also those who are direct descendants of immigrants: Those born in France, are French, but who have a recent migration background. And when one adds up these two populations, we arrive at (the figure) that two-thirds of crimes committed on our soil are perpetrated by these individuals, individuals with a migration background.”