French man convicted of assault after ripping off Muslim woman's veil


Frenchman convicted of assault after ripping off Muslin woman's veil at fairground

A French man who ripped a Muslim woman's veil off while she walked around a fairground has been given a five-month suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay his victim compensation.

The 30-year-old man admitted charges of aggravated assault. His defence of the September 2012 attack in Nantes was that he was upholding a law banning women from wearing niqabs, face-covering veils, in public.

The law, introduced by Nicholas Sarkozy, came into force in April 2011. But, according to Perth Now, his defence was thrown out by public prosecutors, who accused him of acting as a vigilante and carrying out an assault motivated by his victim's religious faith.

The Daily Mail reports that a judgment against him released by the Nantes criminal court read: "Ordinary citizens are not entitled to take the law into their own hands."

Under the law, women found guilty of wearing niqabs in public can be fined the equivalent of around £130, or be required to attend citizenship classes.

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