Macron says new French trial for Ian Bailey could be arranged
He spoke in Dublin yesterday.
During his Irish visit yesterday, French President Emmanuel Macron said a new French trial for Ian Bailey could be arranged.
This was the president's first official trip to Ireland and during his time in Dublin, he extended his thoughts to the friends and family of Sophie Toscan du Plantier who was murdered in Cork in 1996.
Macron said: "My thoughts go to her family and friends. It is such a tragedy and so much suffering remains. The trial is still ongoing and accordingly, the family could not mourn."
He also noted that if Bailey agreed to go to France, a new trial could be arranged, saying: "Should the person condemned agree to come to France, a new trial could be organised but so far he has been refusing to do so."
In October of last year, the Irish High Court rejected an attempt for the French authorities to extradite Bailey for his alleged involvement in the murder.
This would have been Bailey's third extradition process to France
Bailey was accused of murdering Sophie in December 1996, only days before Christmas in the driveway of her holiday home in Schull, West Cork.
The court ruled that Bailey could not be surrendered to France after a European Arrest Warrant (EAW) issued in 2019.
He was then convicted of the murder in his absence by a Paris court in May 2019, and imposed a 25 year sentence.
Despite this conviction, Bailey has always denied involvement in the murder.
Macron added: "The French Court is now considering what to do next and it’s leaving a window, a period of time, for the Irish and French courts to decide what to do next."
Taoiseach Micheal Martin also described the murder as a "horrible deed", saying: "To the family, we send our sincere and ongoing sympathies. But also empathy. I watched the recent documentaries and one could not but be struck by the nobility and dignity of Sophie’s family."