Four students sentenced for violence on right-wing day of rage
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A Paris court on Tuesday passed suspended prison sentences on four students arrested at Sunday's right-wing "Day of Rage" demonstration against President François Hollande. The defendants' lawyers accused police of political victimisation.
The court handed found Aymeric Barthelemy de Saizieu, 20, Louis Marie Meurin, 18, and Loïc Rey, 18, of throwing a barrier from a building site towards a line of gendarmes during
the protest, which was called by a number of right-wing groups to oppose Hollande's policies.
Another protester, Hughes Roumier, was found guilty of throwing firecrackers towards the police.
All four were given two-month suspended sentences.
Charges against school student Sybille Durand, 18 - who was accused of throwing an empty beer can at police - were dropped for procedural reasons.
Prosecutors had asked for the first three to be jailed for two months, describing them as immature individuals incapable of self-control who could have caused serious injury, one month for Roumier and a monthy suspended for Durand.
Rey's lawyer, Antoine Vey, accused the authorities of exploiting the law for political ends, claiming that the accused were "judged for their presence at a demonstration".
Police arrested 262 people after Sunday's protest, releasing 226 of them.
The Trotskyist New Anti-capitalist Party (NPA) has called on the hard left to try to regain the initiative after Sunday's demonstration with a "weekend of revolt" in February.
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