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France indicts three over Trèbes supermarket terror attack

ERIC CABANIS, AFP | A sign reading "Closed road" blocks the entrance of the Super U supermarket where a gunman took hostages in a string of attacks on March 23 that left a total of four people dead.

As part of the ongoing investigation into the deadly terrorist attacks in the southern French towns of Carcassonne and Trèbes in March 2018, prosecutor’s indicted three people a source in the judiciary told Reuters.

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The three people were brought before the prosecutor on Friday and placed in detention. One was also charged with possession of category A and B weapons in connection with a terrorist plot, according to the same source.

Six people – family and friends of the attack’s mastermind, Radouane Lakdim, according to a source familiar with the case – were detained and questioned on Tuesday as part of the investigation.

Lakdim, born in Morocco in April 1992 and naturalised in France in 2004, was killed by police in the supermarket.

Terrorist started as a petty criminal

Lakdim killed Jean Mazières, 60, during a carjacking and shot and injured an off-duty police officer in Carcassonne, a town around 15 minutes away from Trèbes. He killed Hervé Sosna and Christian Medves during the supermarket siege, where he demanded the release of November 13, 2015, Paris attacks suspect Salah Abdeslam. In total, he injured 15 people during the attack.

Among the victims at the supermarket was policeman Arnaud Beltrame, 44, who was shot after he undertook one of the ultimate acts of bravery when he offered up his own life to save a hostage in the supermarket attack.

He was known to police for petty crime and drug dealing, and since 2014 was on the so-called "Fiche S" surveillance list, a government register of individuals suspected of being radicalised but who have yet to perform acts of terrorism.

The Islamic State (IS) group claimed the attack on a jihadist website, stating that he was one of its "soldiers".

>> READ: Arnaud Beltrame, the French military policeman who 'fell as a hero'

(France 24 with REUTERS)

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