Friday, September 24

Faced with justice, Alexandre Benalla claims to have had “the impression of doing things well”

Who is Alexandre Benalla really? A paragon of ambition, capable of rising in a few years from a student job as a security guard to a post of project manager within “The organizational UFO” – in his words – from the Elysee? An example of professionalism in security and coordination, “Very good player between the lines”, according to the football metaphor of Commissioner Maxence Creusat, another accused of the trial? A more clever character, telling the police his lost phone, which we will finally find switched off in the apartment where he was staying – “We can lose something and find it”, does he justifiably justify? Or a young man intoxicated by the presidential campaign, to the point of making, in the spring of 2017, a “selfie” where he brandishes a weapon for which he does not have a license – but which he assures fanatical that it was fake?

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Undoubtedly a little of all this at the same time, in view of the first two days of hearing, where the president, Isabelle Prévost-Desprez, carried out relentlessly, but with humor, the interrogation of the two main defendants, MM. Benalla and Crase. Alexandre Benalla’s career is well known: from adolescence, he dreams of being a police commissioner. He began studying “law and public security” and took advantage of his weekends to work as a security agent, notably with the Socialist Party. He is also embarking on internships to integrate the reserve of the gendarmerie, where he will be trained by Vincent Crase, also a reservist. He then made a brief stint at the European Patent Office, which he left in mid-2016 to join “The human adventure” En Marche!

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Quickly, his “Organizational skills” made him climb the ranks, until he became director of campaign security. The opportunity to recruit his friend and colleague from the gendarmerie reserve Vincent Crase as ” right arm “. The latter has an equally eclectic background: teacher in an apprenticeship training center, salesperson in insurance, private detective… ” I like to change ”, he evades, praising his constant commitment as a reservist and his “Constable DNA”.

“I felt a desire to humiliate myself”

Both men take their roles seriously. To the point of acquiring, in spring 2017, several Glock revolvers to secure the HQ of La République en Marche. “We could imagine the worst”, explains Vincent Crase, who details the “Extremist group tags” in the district or the occupation of the seat by activists of the association Droit au logement. “We were under constant pressure. “ But the authorization to possess these weapons is not renewed after the campaign. “I may have lacked rigor”, recognizes Mr. Crase. Who refutes the term “Illegal” concerning these revolvers. “So give me another one, I open my chakras”, quips the president. Who recalls that Vincent Crase wore one of these Glocks, the 1er May 2018, when he accompanied Alexandre Benalla to observe the demonstrations, which he initially denied to investigators.

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