More than 10,000 euros! These are the total costs incurred by Nadezh Renda and Georges Richard after their trial for the July 14 attack. “Not to mention €3,700 in lost wages for Georges, who took unpaid leave.” A hole. However, refunds are slow to arrive. So much so that a week before the verdict, this couple from Cagnes, psychological victims, is not sure that they will be able to go to Paris on December 13.
Admittedly, Nadège and Georges did “bad luck”. They paid more than 3,000 euros to rent in Paris for six weeks, until the day of the application. This accommodation was a dump: they lost everything. Nadège also had unforeseen medical expenses. She counted on at least a refund of the train tickets, booked for mid-August. But nothing yet.
If the case of Nadège and Georges is extreme, it is far from isolated. As the trial begins on Tuesday, with requests from the public prosecutor, many civil parties are still waiting for reimbursement of their court costs. And they are increasingly expressing their impatience.
In theory, everything was done to facilitate their participation in this historic trial. In the absence of organization in Nice, the Ministry of Justice provided funds: reimbursed plane and train tickets, a flat rate of 110 euros per hotel night in Paris, 17.50 euros for each meal and a reimbursement of 43.78 euros per day of stay, in Paris as well as in the Acropolis Palace in Nice, where the trial is broadcast – an extraordinary device, indeed.
But in practice, it all takes time. A lot, sometimes. Gold “270 victims came to testify in Paris, I am reminded of Nicolas Gemsa, a lawyer for three hundred civil parties. Most of them came from Nice, but also from Toulouse, Réunion… These people who tried to cash in are now bloodless.”
“I limited myself just in case”
Frédéric Zaborowski, 49, is a professional firefighter in Nice. A psychological victim, he was arrested “due to trial”. Frédéric went to Paris from October 10 to 12, with his companion, to testify. Price: around 1000 euros – flight, hotel and food. Still not compensated. “But I don’t regret going up there. I came with my backpack full of grief, to leave it at the Court. It helps to move forward in the healing process.”
Julie Serfaty, another psychological victim, was expecting. “I have limited myself in case I am not reimbursed”, smiles this 28-year-old Niçoise. The three days he spent in Paris cost him a hundred euros, the same as the train. “My brother hosted me. He left me his 14m2 studio. I ate sandwiches. At least I went there.”
Some refuse to testify
Other victims were compensated, at least partially. This is the case of Alain Darista, even if he considers the price list very limited. But within the Promenade des Anges association, this grieving grandfather knows the members “who have not touched anything from the beginning”or who have given up coming to testify. “Frustrating! It’s livelier in Paris, we’re actors of the trial. Here [à Acropolis]we do not participate, even if the intention is good.”
86 dead, 458 injured, 2,500 victims supported by the Guarantee Fund: in the face of such a tragedy, the question of cost might seem secondary, even obscene. She is not.
“We must be physically present in Paris for the judgment”, explains Nadège Renda. She plans to pawn her jewelry to Crédit Municipal so she can ride. In addition, this delay is perceived badly by the victims: “This is another fight, which in the current context is not necessary…”