Swiss Swiss Islamologist Tariq Ramadan at the Palais de Justice in Paris, February 13, 2020 - AFP

The Islamologist Tariq Ramadan chose Thursday as a defense line to accuse the examining magistrates of being under "political influence", during a tense interrogation which ended with two new indictments of the preacher for rapes.

In the closed session of an office at the Paris court, the Swiss intellectual and his lawyer faced two of the three judges in charge of the investigation during more than 4 hours of fierce exchanges, according to the minutes consulted by AFP.

A "manipulator" in a "dominant-dominated" relationship

Since 2018, the intellectual has been under investigation for "rape" and "rape of a vulnerable person", for the facts denounced by Henda Ayari and "Christelle", in 2012 in Paris and in 2009 in Lyon. After denying any extra-marital relationship, the preacher had to change versions in the face of the abundant sexual correspondence exhumed by the investigators. He now pleads harsh but "consented" "relations of domination".

Thursday's interrogation focused on the testimony of two other women, 30 and 37, to whom the investigation was expanded last summer by the Paris prosecutor's office. Heard in February 2019, they assured the police that this “manipulator” had each dragged them into a virtual “dominant-dominated” relationship before a brutal meeting in a Parisian hotel, in late 2015 and early 2016.

"I asked him to be softer, but he said to me:" It's your fault, you deserve it "(…) and that we had to obey," one of them reported to the investigators. , relating a relationship from 2015. "It is of a different order than physical rape, (…) there is moral rape", explained the other, referring to two meetings in March 2016 in Paris.

A repetitive pattern

For judges, this pattern is repeated in Tariq Ramadan's relationships with more than a dozen women. The Islamologist puts forward explicit sexual exchanges and suggestive photos sent beforehand by these women in an attempt to demonstrate agreed relationships. But for the judges, all of these exchanges seem to be "in fantasy, virtual" and "there is no agreement on the scenario" of meetings at the hotel: "these women can expect not to suffer what you write to them ”.

"Are you pretending or is it voluntary deafness?" “, Irritates Tariq Ramadan. "You know they are lying, you are not for the cause of women. These women are not in control. You are in control. A political grip. "

"The woman who testifies tells you that it is consented, you read" there is rape "", he is indignant.

A judge replied: "She indicates that she was" morally raped "".

"I would like you to introduce into French law and case law the criminal definition of moral rape," replied the Islamologist.

The question of control

Tariq Ramadan questions the testimony of the 37-year-old woman who agreed to bring a civil action in recent days, claiming that it is “a copy and paste of the hearings of the other complainants”, which have been revealed in the press since the beginning of the case at the end of 2017.

"I'm going to ask my investigating judges a simple question", he announces: "How many concordant lies?" How much implausibility? So that you begin to see the only truth in this file. There is no rape! "

Unscrambling the messages, the judges underline: “You are blowing hot and cold (…). This allows you to verify that they are well hung? "The Islamologist then refuses to answer this question" who seeks - a priori - to develop a thesis, the only one you have left (...) which would be linked to the grip ".

This question of the preacher's potential hold over several women is the subject of an expert report, entrusted to a psychiatrist renowned in the legal world, Daniel Zagury. Its conclusions will have significant weight in establishing possible "moral duress", one of the criteria for rape defined in the Criminal Code.

"You are about to give a new definition of rape which will in fact not apply to any politician," claims Tariq Ramadan, without convincing his judges.


VIDEO. Tariq Ramadan case: Islamologist indicted for rape of two other women


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