Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

Can Weibo win over US investors?

Read more

DEBATE

Algeria: What's the Choice? Incumbent Bouteflika Votes in Wheelchair (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Algeria: What's the Choice? Incumbent Bouteflika Votes in Wheelchair

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Virunga Park chief shot

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Algerian election: Bouteflika votes in wheelchair

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Algeria's media: a mixture of censorship and free speech

Read more

WEB NEWS

Nigerian web users call for end to violence

Read more

FOCUS

Bitcoin in the US: A monetary revolution?

Read more

ENCORE!

Fast cars and slow trains

Read more

  • Captain not at helm when ship listed, South Korean officials say

    Read more

  • Nobel-winning Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies at 87

    Read more

  • With a strong French presence, veterans and fresh faces, Cannes aims to please

    Read more

  • Low turnout reported in Algeria as Bouteflika seeks fourth term

    Read more

  • Astronomers discover Earth-like planet that could support life

    Read more

  • Russia and West agree on steps to ease Ukraine crisis

    Read more

  • Mob launches deadly attack on UN shelter for S. Sudan civilians

    Read more

  • Eurostar train mishap causes 'severe' delays

    Read more

  • Chelsea Clinton announces she's pregnant

    Read more

  • French troops free five aid workers kidnapped in Mali by Islamists

    Read more

  • In pictures: Iranian woman pardons son’s killer at the gallows

    Read more

  • After cup defeat, Spanish pundits read last rites for Barcelona

    Read more

  • India heads to polls in single largest day of voting

    Read more

  • Ukraine talks open in Geneva as Putin talks tough on TV

    Read more

  • Pro-Russian separatists killed in attack on Black Sea base

    Read more

  • Man executed in Texas for 2002 triple murder

    Read more

  • Scandal-hit French doctor Jacques Servier dies at 92

    Read more

  • Belgian head of wildlife reserve shot in DR Congo

    Read more

  • Crunch talks on Ukraine begin in Geneva

    Read more

  • Stagehand of God? Maradona's legendary goal inspires a play

    Read more

  • US rolls out red carpet for French critic of capitalism

    Read more

  • N. Korea not amused by London hair salon's Kim Jong-un ad

    Read more

  • Real Madrid beat old foes Barcelona to lift Copa del Rey

    Read more

  • France's new PM targets welfare in drive to cut spending

    Read more

  • Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

    Read more

France

French police accused of 'cover-up' in Alps murders

© afp

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-10-20

The brother of a British-Iraqi man who was shot dead in the Alps along with his family last year accused French police of a cover-up in his first media interviews Sunday. Zaid al-Hilli was arrested in June on suspicion of orchestrating the murders.

The brother of a British-Iraqi national who was shot and killed along with his family in the French Alps last year has accused French authorities of "covering up" for a local suspect while protesting his own innocence in his first interviews with the media on Sunday.

Zaid al-Hilli, whose brother Saad was killed along with his wife and her mother in the French Alps in September 2012, told the BBC and The Sunday Times newspaper that the brothers were engaged in a bitter inheritance dispute – but insisted that he did not orchestrate the murders.

Zaid, 54, remains free on bail following his arrest in June on suspicion of masterminding the killings. He has accused French police of failing to investigate the possibility that the real target was Sylvain Mollier, a French national who was also found shot dead near the Hilli’s family's car in the hills above Lake Annecy.

"They are covering up for someone in France in that region and they know it," Zaid told the BBC.

Another suspect?

"Mollier was involved in family disputes and was an outsider to [his] rich family. There is something more to it locally... most crime has local roots," Zaid said.

But French investigators have said they are “99.9 percent” sure that Mollier was an innocent bystander who was killed only because he stumbled upon the murder scene while he was out cycling and became a witness.

"Investigators are 99.9 percent convinced that there is nothing more to scratch at with Sylvain Mollier," Annecy prosecutor Eric Maillaud told AFP earlier this month.

Maillaud’s comments followed French media reports that Mollier was a notorious playboy who may have angered his romantic rivals.

"The slightest gossip was dug in to, exploited, verified,” Maillaud said. “There is nothing to support this possibility after dozens and dozens of interviews.”

The French investigators’ main working theory remains that a dispute over a family inheritance was the motive for the killings.

‘I don’t trust the French’

Zaid told The Sunday Times that the last time the brothers spoke, Saad had physically attacked him as they argued over a house in Claygate, a leafy suburb of London, which they had inherited from their mother.

"I was on the bed in my bedroom and he (Saad) pinned me down," he said.

Zaid, who works as a payroll manager for a leisure company, said he had given 25 hours of interviews to British police but has refused to go to France for further questioning.

"The French, I don't trust them at all," he told the Times. "My brother was killed there in that region and I am not going to take the risk."

He said he had taken a day off work on the day of the murders and gone to the English seaside resort of Worthing with a friend. He also said he has been taking anti-depressants since the killings and has buried himself in work to deal with his grief.

Zaid said the brothers, who were born to middle-class parents in Baghdad before the family moved to Britain in 1971, had enjoyed a close relationship despite coming to blows over the house.

He also said that he did not think the motivation for the killings lay in the family's Iraqi connections.

"That's all in the past," he told The Sunday Times.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)
 

Date created : 2013-10-20

  • FRANCE

    Brother of French Alps murder victim released on bail

    Read more

  • ALPS SHOOTINGS

    Injured girl in Alps shooting saw just 'one bad guy'

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Family feud possible motive in French Alps killings

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)