Cécile Bourgeon, Fiona's mother, upon her arrival at the courthouse in Lyon.


Jeff Pachoud / AFP

  • Cécile Bourgeon, Fiona's mother, and her former companion Berkane Makhlouf were on appeal before the Rhône assizes since December 1 for the death of Fiona, whose body has never been found.

  • Tuesday, the attorney general of the Rhône Assize Court requested the maximum penalty against Cécile Bourgeon and Berkane Makhlouf.

    Namely thirty years of criminal imprisonment.

  • Cécile Bourgeon, sentenced to a more severe sentence than Makhlouf, appeared free after having served five years of imprisonment at first instance.

At the assize court of the Rhône, in Lyon

The verdict came and surprised in the courtroom.

Judged on appeal, Cécile Bourgeon, the mother of little Fiona, was sentenced this Wednesday afternoon to 20 years in prison for the death of her child.

A more severe sentence than that of his former companion Berkane Makhlouf, who was sentenced to 18 years in prison. 

The day before, the Advocate General of the Rhône Assize Court Joël Sollier had requested the maximum penalty against them, namely 30 years in prison.

The magistrate had also asked the jurors for "severity", specifying that Fiona had only them "to defend her".

A mystery still not solved

The body of the little girl, who died in May 2013, has never been found.

The conditions of his death remain unclear.

The two and a half weeks of debates in Lyon did not allow to remove the many doubts that remain in the case, starting with the place where the child was buried (or thrown, depending on the convictions of the civil parties).

The mystery also remains on what happened on the night of the tragedy, the explanations of the two defendants being contradictory and very evasive.

Especially since everything took place behind closed doors.

Cécile Bourgeon, who was released in February 2019 after serving her initial 5-year sentence, will return to prison again. 

More information to come ...


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  • Berkane Makhlouf

  • Fiona

  • Lyon

  • Justice

  • Assize Court

  • Cecile Bourgeon

  • Society