Refusal, rodeos: Senators beef up safety bill in committee

Refusal, rodeos: Senators beef up safety bill in committee

Refusal to comply, rodeos around the city and violence against elected officials: Senators in committee on Wednesday fleshed out the Interior Ministry’s (Lopmi) Guidance and Programming Bill by increasing penalties for these crimes, which are multiplying.

The amended text will be discussed in the first reading in the plenary hall of the Senate next Tuesday with a majority from the right. On October 18, there will be a solemn vote on this first bill before the senators, before the deputies, for the 2022-2023 session of Parliament.

The bill, supported by the interior minister, provides for an additional 15 billion euros in the budget over five years, half of it for digital investments.

In particular, the text includes additional law enforcement personnel with the creation of 11 mobile units and 200 new gendarmerie brigades to allow “the doubling of the presence of police officers and gendarmes on public roads”, according to the minister.

“We cannot be objective against a text that essentially states that we must increase the Interior Ministry’s credits by 25%,” explained Marc-Philippe Daubresse to AFP, co-rapporteur LR with centrist Loïc Hervé.

Among the changes made in committee, senators adopted an amendment by Mr. Daubresse aimed at “improving criminal response to three key issues: violence against elected officials, refusal to conform, and urban rodeos.”

Under this change, the penalties for assaulting an elected official would be aligned with those for assaulting the police.

The Highway Code would be amended to make non-compliance with a driver more severely punished: the penalty would be increased from two to three years imprisonment and the amount of the fine would be doubled to €30,000.

Finally, the amendment provides specific suppression of urban rodeos “that would put others at risk of death or injury likely to result in maiming or permanent infirmity.” The resulting penalties would then be five years’ imprisonment and a fine of €75,000 (compared to one year’s imprisonment and €15,000 without aggravating circumstances).

Another notable change: Senators put a damper on the government’s desire to generalize the flat-rate criminal offense (AFD) to all offenses punishable by imprisonment under a year.

Through an amendment by Mr. Hervé, they limited the application of the AfD to a number of offenses such as tagging, obstructing traffic, the unjustified use of the alarm signal on trains, unauthorized entry into school facilities, the purchase or sale of a fighting dog…


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