In Senegal, the six defendants, the producers and the actors of the web series “Cirque noir” were heard on Friday, August 27, by a judge from the Dakar court, ten days after their arrest. They are prosecuted in prison for spreading images that run counter to good morals and general insult to decency.
as reported from Dakar, Thea Ollivier
These allegations follow the complaint of the Islamic NGO Jamra regarding the distribution of the trailer for their series, which are described as “pornographic” and which had caused controversy, as it contained bare scenes and dialogues that were considered vulgar. If NGOs are used to filing a complaint with the National Audiovisual Council (CNRA), this is the first time the team in a series has gone to trial. During a hearing of almost two hours, the six defendants were questioned by the judge and the prosecutor, who requested two years’ imprisonment for the producer and one year for the others.
“Uncharacterized” crimes On the other hand, the lawyers pleaded not guilty and demanded that the defendants be released, because the crimes are “not characterized” because nothing was done in public and only one of the defendants is responsible. Distribution, explains Maître Abdoulaye Tall: “We must not regard art as something that is common. Art is simulation. We are in love, we are in the imagination. It is for this reason that we actually told the judge that asking for a conviction is a way to plunder art ”.
For Coumba Touré, a cultural entrepreneur, they do not deserve imprisonment: “Even if we do not agree at all with what they have done, we can only encourage them in these difficult times, because there are students, there are musicians, there are also rappers. Everyone has their project underway. I hope they are released and that they will learn from it as well ”.
Tears in her eyes The mother of one of the accused, Mohamed Housseiny, left the court with tears in her eyes: “I forgive him for not doing it consciously. It is a youthful mistake. We can punish them, but not lock them in two years. With their future, it does not work because they are providers ”.
At the end of the hearing, about ten relatives raised their fists in sign of support. The verdict is expected on September 3.
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