In Béziers, Robert Ménard establishes a curfew for children under 13

Ten years after issuing a similar decree, the mayor of Béziers, Robert Ménard, established a curfew for minors under the age of 13 in several neighborhoods, he announced on Tuesday April 23, the day when unions and left-wing associations will demonstrate “against far-right ideas” in this city

In Béziers, Robert Ménard establishes a curfew for children under 13

Ten years after issuing a similar decree, the mayor of Béziers, Robert Ménard, established a curfew for minors under the age of 13 in several neighborhoods, he announced on Tuesday April 23, the day when unions and left-wing associations will demonstrate “against far-right ideas” in this city.

The former close friend of Marine Le Pen signed a municipal decree on Monday stipulating that “any minor under the age of 13 may not, without being accompanied by an adult, travel on public roads from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. » in three “priority districts”, namely the historic center and its surroundings and the Devèze and Iranget-Grangette districts.

The ban applies “every night” for the period April 22 to September 30. “In the event of an emergency or immediate danger for [them] or for others”, these minors may be “returned to [their] home or to the police station” by the municipal or national police, provides the order filed with the prefecture. “The parents of the children concerned may be subject to criminal prosecution,” warns the text.

“Urban violence”

In his decree, the councilor justifies his decision by the "increasing number of young minors left to their own devices in the middle of the night", as well as by a "worsening number of incidents", notably "urban violence", citing the school fire four years ago, in 2019, and the “July 2023 riots.”

Tuesday, the mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi (Horizons), welcomed the initiative of the mayor of Béziers, on BFM-TV, and announced his desire to establish a curfew "throughout the city" for minors. unaccompanied under 13s. “We implemented it in 2009 (…); there was an interruption at the time of Covid (…), so we are in the process of renewing the 2009 decree so that it continues the role it played from 2009 to 2020,” he explained .

Questioned by Agence France-Presse (AFP), Mr. Ménard did not cite precise figures: he affirmed that delinquency among under-13s constitutes a “blind spot” in the statistics “because we do not brought before the judge and they are not condemned.” In France, the criminal liability of a minor can be incurred, but his age and his capacity for discernment are taken into account by the children's judges who follow them.

According to the “first photograph” of delinquency and insecurity, published at the beginning of 2024 by the Ministry of the Interior, those under 13 represented 2% of those implicated in attacks on people (compared to 36% for those aged 30 to 44) and 1% of those accused of violent theft (compared to 44% for those aged 18 to 29).

In 2018, the Council of State canceled a similar decree taken in 2014 by Robert Ménard pointing out the absence of “precise elements likely to support the existence of particular risks relating to minors under 13 years of age”.