A schoolgirl has admitted to spreading lies about her teacher which eventually led to his gruesome beheading in the streets of Paris.
Samuel Paty's shocking death in October triggered an outpouring of support not only in France but around the globe after he was targeted for showing students cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad from the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo during a history class where students debated free speech.
However the details surrounding the classroom events were falsified by the 13-year-old girl, who has revealed she was not even present on the day the cartoons were shown.
"She lied because she felt trapped in a spiral because her classmates had asked her to be a spokesperson," her lawyer, Mbeko Tabula, told AFP.
The girl, who has not been named, had told her father that Paty, 47, ordered the Muslim students to leave the room prior to showing the cartoons.
It has now been revealed she had been suspended from school that particular day and was only informed about the incident by a friend, Le Parisien reported.
According to the publication, the child, not wanting to tell her father she had been suspended for bad behaviour, said her disagreement with Paty had triggered her suspension.
Accounts from other students reveal Paty had only asked anyone who may be offended to cover their eyes.
Her father later filmed two social media videos accusing Paty of discrimination, before a hate campaign snowballed online.
Paty was later beheaded by 18-year-old Abdoullakh Anzorov, who had been incensed by the alleged actions of Paty, who was later shot dead by police.
Charges for girl and father
The schoolgirl has been charged with slander, while her father and an Islamist preacher face charges of complicity in the killing.
In January seven people were detained suspected of communicating via social media with Anzorov, joining another 14 people who were already under investigation, France 24 reported.
Paty's murder sparked a torrent of outrage that prompted President Emmanuel Macron to crack down on Islamist extremism and violence in a country reeling from a wave of jihadist attacks since 2015 that have killed more than 250 people.
Seventeen people were killed over three days of attacks in January 2015, beginning with the massacre of 12 people at satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, which had published cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.
While such caricatures focusing on many religions are common in France, they are particularly sensitive for Muslims with such depictions deemed highly offensive in Islam.
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