Paris Attack: Suspect Salah Abdeslam sealed-lips at French hearing


Paris, France. The culprit who is believed to be the sole survivor of the Islamic group that attacked Paris last November was presented before a French Investigating judge on Friday, but he sealed his lips to say anything about the outbreak that killed 130 people.

Salah Abdeslam, a French national raised in Belgium, was bought under heavily armed escort to a court in Central Paris from his solitary confinement cell in a high-security prison outside the capital.

Although he had spoken to investigators while in custody but he refused to cooperate on Friday.

The Paris prosecutor’s office said: “From the start, he exercised his right to remain silent by refusing to reply to questions from an investigating magistrate.

“He also refused to give his reasons for using his right to silence. And also declined to confirm the statements he made previously to the Belgian police and to a Belgian investigating magistrate,” the prosecutor’s office added.

Frank Berton, his lawyer, said Abdeslam, was upset about being kept under day-and-night watch inside his cell at Fleury-Merogis prison, south of Paris. “He can’t handle being watched 24 hours a day and that’s causing a problem psychologically I believe,” Berton told reporters.

Abdeslam is believed to be the sole survivor of Nov. 13’s attack by Islamist gunmen and suicide bombers, including his brother, for which the Islamic State militant group that controls large parts of Syria and Iraq claimed responsibility. Investigators suspect him at least of having played a logistics role in the assault on a football stadium, several cafes and the Bataclan concert hall, where 90 rock fans died.