Geneva: Biya’s security guards fined for manhandling Swiss journalist 0

The Geneva Police Court on Friday found six members of Cameroonian President Paul Biya’s security service guilty of manhandling a Swiss journalist of public broadcaster RTS in June 2019.

Ruling on appeal, the police court gave them suspended fines, according to a report in Le Temps newspaper confirmed by the journalist’s lawyer. The Geneva Public Prosecutor’s Office had previously sentenced the bodyguards to suspended prison sentences.

The RTS journalist was covering a demonstration of opponents outside the Intercontinental Hotel, where head of state Biya was staying. He was slightly injured. The bodyguards also stripped him of his professional equipment and personal belongings.

The Cameroonian bodyguards argued that they had immunity and the case went all the way to the Federal Court, which ruled that the agents had not acted that day for the security of Biya.

Quoted by Le Temps, the Geneva public prosecutor Olivier Jornot said in court that a “strong signal is needed to remind those who hide behind a so-called diplomatic status they cannot act as they please”.

Source: Swissinfo