PARIS (Feb. 7)
The murderer of Vichy war criminal Rene Bousquet has been declared fit to stand trial by French medical authorities.
Christian Didier committed the crime last June in order “to do something important.” He killed the former chief of the Vichy police just as Bousquet was about to be indicted for crimes against humanity.
Bousquet was charged with having ordered the roundup, arrest and deportation of tens of thousands of Jews during World War II.
Didier, a non-Jew, went to Bousquet’s apartment, in the most exclusive area of Paris, passing as a messenger from the Ministry of Justice.
When Bousquet opened the door, Didier shot him at close range, killing him instantly.
A few minutes after the shooting, Didier called reporters to a “news conference” in his small room in a seedy hotel in a Paris suburb.
Before cameras and tape recorders, he described the murder and said he had done it because he felt the urge to do something positive for society. While he was talking, the police arrived and arrested him.
Sources in the police department immediately described Didier as mentally unbalanced. The pronouncement of the French medical authorities contradicts this earlier declaration.
However, the psychiatrists who examined Didier concluded that while he was perfectly aware of what he had done, his mental situation impaired his responsibility.
No date has been set yet for the trial.