French court hears claims police frisk based on race

AP News
Posted: Feb 25, 2015 9:30 AM

PARIS (AP) — A Paris appeals court is rehearing a racial profiling case brought by 13 men — all black or of North African origin — who claim they've been victims of numerous, unjustified police identity checks because of their ethnicity.

A lower court rejected their claims in 2013, ruling that police officers didn't overstep legal boundaries.

The verdict after Wednesday's hearing was expected to be delayed.

The case has been billed as the first such effort in France to tackle racial profiling by police. The issue was at the forefront of fiery 2005 riots in French housing projects where police have a notoriously bad relationship with youths, often of immigrant origin.

In France, the law allows for widespread police checks on people deemed suspicious. Opponents say police have too much discretion.