France Awaits Verdict in Charlie Hebdo Trial

A verdict is expected on Wednesday in the trial of 14 people accused of helping to organise a terrorist attack on the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January 2015.

Those on trial are accused of assisting the French-Algerian Kouachi brothers, who carried out the Charlie Hebdo attack, and the supermarket hostage-taker Amedy Coulibaly, a Malian-French man, who killed four men during the January 9 incident.

They are faced with charges including financing terrorism, membership of a terrorist organisation and supplying weapons to the attackers.

The main defendant is Ali Riza Polat, who is accused of playing a central role in preparing the attacks. He faces a possible life sentence if convicted.

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Prosecutors have demanded sentences of between five years and life for the alleged attackers, three of whom are being tried in absentia.

The verdict from the court, specially set up for terrorist cases, had to wait while the trial was put on hold due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

The court has considered not only the attack on Charlie Hebdo, but also the attack which followed on a kosher supermarket in the south of Paris.

The three attackers in that incident were shot dead by security forces.

Seventeen people were killed in the attacks.

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