Killer who stabbed lec­turer in cold blood could get 30 years

Irish Daily Mail - - News - From Peter Allen in Paris [email protected]­ly­mail.ie

A DEEPLY re­li­gious Pak­istani na­tional liv­ing il­le­gally in France is fac­ing up to 30 years in prison for the sav­age killing of Ir­ish lec­turer John Dowl­ing.

Re­ferred to pub­licly only as Ali R, the 37-year-old Mus­lim has ad­mit­ted killing the aca­demic out­side the Leonardo de Vinci univer­sity in Paris on Wed­nes­day.

Ali, whose ac­cu­sa­tions that his vic­tim had ‘in­sulted the Prophet Mo­hammed’ were re­jected by oth­ers, was in­dicted for al­leged mur­der dur­ing a short ap­pear­ance be­fore judges in the French cap­i­tal yesterday. He was re­manded in cus­tody in a high se­cu­rity prison in the Paris area, where he will be held un­til his trial.

Pros­e­cu­tors have called for a mur­der con­vic­tion that could be pun­ished by up to 30 years in prison, but de­fence bar­ris­ters will of­fer rea­sons for re­duc­ing the charge to a lesser one, such as man­slaugh­ter.

It came as in­ves­ti­ga­tors re­vealed that Ali’s three-month res­i­dency per­mit had run out, and he was liv­ing in France il­le­gally with no fixed ad­dress since be­ing kicked out of the univer­sity last year.

He stabbed Mr Dowl­ing, 66, with a steak knife and his vic­tim suf­fered 23 wounds to his body dur­ing the blood­bath. An au­topsy

‘Ob­ses­sive re­sent­ment’

car­ried out on Fri­day showed that Mr Dowl­ing suf­fered five wounds to the head, three in the neck, six in the chest, and the rest in ‘de­fen­sive cuts’, said an in­ves­ti­gat­ing source.

Ali has also con­fessed that he held a grudge against the univer­sity af­ter fail­ing his ex­ams, and par­tic­u­larly hated Mr Dowl­ing.

Catherine De­nis, the Nan­terre prose­cu­tor in­volved in the case, said Ali har­boured an ‘ob­ses­sive re­sent­ment’ against the univer­sity.

‘He came to France two years ago to join the man­age­ment school, but did not pass his first year,’ she said.

‘Since then he had been re­turn­ing to the col­lege, and had be­come un­wanted to the point that he was not al­lowed in any more.’

CCTV footage shows Mr Dowl­ing chat­ting calmly with Ali at around mid­day, be­fore the at­tacker took out a steak knife and plunged it into the Ir­ish­man’s throat.

In in­ter­views with po­lice Ali al­leged that the teacher had made fun of his Mus­lim re­li­gion dur­ing English classes at the univer­sity.

He claimed the Dubliner had pro­duced a draw­ing which he showed in class that in­sulted the Prophet Mo­hammed, ac­cord­ing to Ms De­nis.

De­spite this claim, Ms De­nis said: ‘No­body re­mem­bers such an in­ci­dent. We don’t have proof of rad­i­cal­i­sa­tion, but rather a feel­ing that we’re deal­ing with some­one who is very re­li­gious, very pi­ous, very prac­tic­ing.’

Ms De­nis said Ali R was not known to the in­tel­li­gence ser­vices, but was an ‘ob­ses­sive pa­triot’ from the Is­lamic Repub­lic of Pak­istan.

He had not re­newed his res­i­dency per­mit to stay in France af­ter leav­ing the univer­sity, and bought the steak knife from a su­per­mar­ket near the univer­sity.

There are in­di­ca­tions that he may have ar­ranged to meet his vic­tim, and po­lice are check­ing tele­phone and email records to try and es­tab­lish a link.

He en­rolled in a bach­e­lor’s man­age­ment course for for­eign­ers at De Vinci in Septem­ber 2016, but was forced to leave in Au­gust last year af­ter fail­ing his ex­ams.

Yesterday, trib­utes con­tin­ued to pour in for Mr Dowl­ing, who had been due to re­tire at the end of this aca­demic year.

Killer: Ali R has ad­mit­ted stab­bing Mr Dowl­ing in Paris

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