A citizen writes in a book of condolences next to a portrait of the former French Minister of Justice Robert Badinter, who died in 'age 95.
Co-founder of a prestigious law firm, he defends personalities, big names in the press or the business world and occasionally pleads at court.
His fight against the death penalty finds its origins in this morning of November 28, 1972: one of his clients, Roger Bontems, an accomplice in a deadly hostage-taking, has just come from be executed.
This challenges your view of justice. I swore to myself, when leaving the Health Court that morning at dawn, that all my life I would fight the death penalty, he told AFP in 2021.
Respected today for his humanism in the service of law, Robert Badinter has long been a hated lawyer, because of his supposed laxity in law. regard for criminals.
In 1977, he avoided the death penalty for child murderer Patrick Henry, who was sentenced to life imprisonment. The verdict was greeted with fury and incomprehension. After that, five other men escaped the scaffold thanks to him.
In those years, Robert Badinter often went up the steps of the courts under insults and receiving threatening letters.
For public opinion, I was the assassins' lawyer.
A quote from Robert Badinter
The June 3, 1983, hundreds of police demonstrated under the windows of his office shouting Badinter assassin! and Badinter in Moscow!. The police boss will have to resign.
This man with a slim figure and thick black eyebrows was married since 1966 to the philosopher Elisabeth Badinter, née Bleustein-Blanchet, with whom he had three children.
In August 1982, he voted to decriminalize homosexuality. To his credit also, the abolition of high security districts, access for French litigants to the European Court of Human Rights and a law on compensation for accident victims.
After his departure from the government, he chaired the Constitutional Council for nine years (1986-1995).
Always very active, he is working on reform of the UN in the 2000s and on the reform of the Labor Code during the mandate of socialist president François Hollande (2012-2017).
A collection of condolences is made available to the public from Friday evening to Sunday evening at the Ministry of Justice.
The leader of the extreme French right Marine Le Pen evoked a notable figure in the intellectual and legal landscape, while recalling that we could not share all the struggles of the former Minister of Justice.
The President of the Constitutional Council, Laurent Fabius, paid tribute to him by evoking a righteous man among the righteous, who advanced the law and humanism.