‘World at her feet’: British student murdered in 1990 remembered at France trial

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Monique Olivier barely responded as she listened to the family members' testimony

Monique Olivier barely responded as she listened to the relations’ testimony

PARIS – Family members of a British student who was murdered in France in 1990 gave emotional testimony to a French courtroom on Monday in the trial of the widow of serial killer Michel Fourniret, who kidnapped, raped and murdered the 20-year-old.

Monique Olivier is presently on trial in Paris accused of being concerned in the murders of two younger ladies, together with the British student Joanna Parrish, and a nine-year-old woman.

After Fourniret himself died in 2021 at the age of 79 earlier than he may very well be dropped at trial for the three murders, Olivier is the one hyperlink the households need to the reality of what occurred to their family members.

“Joanna’s story ended in May 1990. The vibrant, stunning and proficient 20-year-old with the world at her toes couldn’t reside the life she wished or deserved,” mentioned her father Roger with the courtroom.

Wearing a tan jacket and roll-neck sweater, the 80-year-old stopped at occasions to carry again tears, sipping water earlier than persevering with in a gradual voice.

“There may be no better tragedy than shedding a toddler … when these circumstances are a deliberate act of homicide, it provides to the disbelief, the anger, the trauma and the grief,” he mentioned.

Roger Parrish was the goal of “narcissistic psychopath” Fourniret and “his feminine associate” Olivier, who prosecutors and prosecutors argue was important to realize the belief of victims together with Joanna.

– ‘Funny, type, a lot of buddies’ –

Olivier, now 79 and serving a life sentence handed down in 2008, is on trial for her half in the 1990 abduction, rape and homicide of Joanna and 18-year-old Marie-Angele Domece in 1988.

Fourniret himself mentioned of Domece and Parrish in 2018 that “I’m the one particular person accountable for their destinies… If these folks had not crossed my path, they might nonetheless be alive”.

Olivier can be accused of complicity in the disappearance of nine-year-old Estelle Mouzin in 2003, whose physique was not discovered for many years regardless of intensive searches.

Domece’s stays have been additionally by no means discovered, and Parrish’s uncovered physique was recovered from the river Yonne in the French division of the identical identify.

Domece and Parrish each got here from Auxerre in central France, the place the British woman was working as a educating assistant whereas finding out French at Leeds University.

Fourniret is believed to have answered a categorised advert posted by Joanna in an area newspaper providing English classes — hoping to earn extra cash to go to her then-boyfriend in Czechoslovakia.

Roger Parrish informed the courtroom he was “completely certain” his daughter wouldn’t get right into a automobile alone with a wierd man, including to his perception in Olivier’s function in the crime.

Joanna’s boyfriend at the time, Patrick Proctor, now 55, informed the courtroom in French that she was “a humorous and type younger woman with a lot of buddies”.

“Even 33 years later, she continues to be in my ideas,” he mentioned.

– ‘Fought too lengthy’ –

Facing an additional life sentence if convicted, Olivier appeared cautious however not impressed by the proof as she sat behind glass screens in the dock.

She pulled a black coat over her shoulders and slipped a pair of glasses from a flower-embroidered case because the listening to started, saying only some phrases briefly in response to a procedural query from decide Didier Safar.

Olivier mentioned final week that she admitted to “all of the details” introduced in opposition to her.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs confronted the decide when Monday’s listening to started, saying they need to be capable to query Olivier in response to the plaintiffs’ statements.

The courtroom “shouldn’t steal this trial from the plaintiffs”, mentioned lawyer Didier Seban. “We have been preventing for justice for too lengthy due to this courtroom with out doing it in an exemplary manner.”

But the decide finally mentioned that Olivier couldn’t be questioned repeatedly exterior the three half-days already put aside.

The instances have been dogged for years by slippage and delays in the justice system that plaintiffs blame for the failure to convey Fourniret to trial.

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