A French court on Wednesday sentenced Yacine Mihoub to life in prison, with no possibility of parole for 22 years, for the 2018 murder of Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll. A second man, Alexander Carrimbacus, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for theft with anti-Semitic intent.

In its ruling, the court said that the murder-robbery had been fueled by “a broader context of anti-Semitism,” which had led Mihoub to believe Knoll, as a Jew, had “hidden treasures” in her home, according to France24.

Knoll, 85, was stabbed 11 times, and Mihoub, her neighbor, is alleged to have shouted Allahu Akbar (“God is great”) while killing her.

Knoll’s family lauded the court’s sentence as “just,” and Jewish groups also praised the verdict.

“Mireille Knoll survived the Holocaust only to die as the victim of violent antisemitism,” tweeted Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. “My thoughts are with her loved ones as the trial comes to an end and the perpetrator is sentenced to life in prison. May her memory forever be a blessing.”

The American Jewish Committee tweeted: “Nothing can bring her back, but at the very least justice has been served. Our thoughts are with her family today.”

Dr. Shimon Samuels, director for International Relations at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said in a statement, “There should be no reduction of sentences for such a heinous crime. We expect that – taking into account the antisemitic circumstances—this will represent a new step for French jurisprudence. The police and judges now have access to the [International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance] Definition and hate-crime legislation.”

StandWithUs Israel executive director Michael Dickson tweeted: “Anti-Semitism is deadly. May Mireille’s memory be a blessing.”

This article was first published by the Jewish Journal.


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