Assises Liège: Diana Hanzé guilty of bodily harm involuntarily resulting in death

The 46-year-old man had been pushed from a window on the second floor of a building. The facts took place on April 5, 2017 around 3:30 p.m. in Verviers. Mohamed El Atmani (46 years old), in a state of illegal residence, had a fall from the window on the second floor of a building located rue des Raines. Investigation had determined that he had been pushed before he fell. He had died of his injuries after being hospitalized.

Diana Hanzé was found in the room of the apartment, where Mohamed El Atmani had fallen from the window. According to the police officers there, she was asleep or pretended to be asleep when they arrived. Diana Hanzé claimed to ignore what had happened to Mohamed El Atmani.

A few weeks later, she went to the police to explain that she was responsible for the fall of Mohamed El Atmani. She claimed that he had made her a sexual proposition which she had refused. She had then pushed him away and, she said, he had passed through the window, without her wishing for his death. But three days after her confession, she retracted her statements, claiming that she had made the confession in order to be jailed in order to find a way out of her drug addiction problems.

An expert in biomechanics had analyzed the fall performed by Mohamed El Atmani and, on the basis of probabilities, he had determined that the fall could not result from an accident or suicide. This expert had retained a fall caused by the intervention of a third party.

Diana Hanzé had finally contested any intervention. Initially prosecuted before the criminal court of Verviers, she had been acquitted. Then, the Liege Court of Appeal declared itself incompetent and considered that it should answer for a murder. The case had been referred to the Assize Court.

The jury declared Diana Hanzé guilty of assault and battery leading to the death of Mohamed El Atmani without intending to give it up. In the reasons for its decision, the jury retained insufficient evidence to demonstrate homicidal intent. But the jury considered that the confessions of Diana Hanzé are corroborated by the elements of the file, including the biomechanical analysis. The jury considers that Diana Hanzé was not sleeping at the time of the facts and that she erased the prints which were on the frame of the window.

The thesis accepted by the jury is that according to which Diana Hanzé, jealous, had repulsed Mohamed El Atmani after sexual advances and pushed him through the window without intending to cause his death. Diana Hanzé is also convicted of possession of narcotics.

The sentencing debates will take place on Friday morning.

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