The murder trial of rapper MHD opens this Monday in Paris

The artist and four co-defendants will appear free, three others are still in pre-trial detention and the last, still on the run, will be tried in absentia. They face thirty years of criminal imprisonment.

On the night of July 5 to 6, 2018, Loïc K., aged 23, died after being voluntarily run over by a Mercedes in the 10th arrondissement of Paris, then beaten up by a dozen men and lacerated with blows. knives.

The car was found a day later, burnt out, in a parking lot.


Quickly, the investigators explore the track of a settling of accounts between young people of the city of Chaufourniers, nicknamed the “red city”, and that of the Grange aux Belles, located not far from each other, in the 10th and 19th arrondissements.

Clashes between the two bands are nothing new. More than a year earlier, a young person from the Chaufourniers had already died in a fight.

A few hours before the scuffle that resulted in the death of Loïc K., a dozen people from the Grange aux Belles had entered the home of an old man from the Chaufourniers district and threatened him with clubs, an act that had sparked a will of reprisals of the rival city.

A rising rapper

Several witnesses implicate the rapper MHD, whose real name is Mohamed Sylla, a resident of Chaufourniers.

Pioneer of “afro-trap”, a mixture of hip-hop and African music, the young man, then 23 years old, is on the rise. His first album sold more than 400,000 copies and he was noticed abroad by artists like Madonna and Drake.

Investigators establish that the burned Mercedes belonged to him and witnesses claim to have seen him on board.

In addition, on several videos of the scene, one of the men, of African type, has his hair dyed blond and wears a tracksuit from the Puma brand. We see him dragging Loïc K. out of the car and kicking him in the head before leaving the scene. At that time, MHD had peroxide hair and was a Puma brand ambassador.

The latter has throughout the investigation denied the facts, arguing in particular that he very regularly lent his car to those around him, and that several people in the neighborhood wore the same hairstyle as him.

A year and a half of pre-trial detention

The affair, which caused the artist to spend a year and a half in pre-trial detention before being released in the summer of 2020 under judicial supervision, has clearly slowed down the career of the man whom the press has nicknamed the “Little Prince of the “Afro-trap”.

However, he released a new album in 2021, which went gold, and this summer a new single called “Jungle”.

Among the other defendants, three, including the one who is on the run, are suspected of having stabbed the victim. Another will also be judged for the fire of the Mercedes.

“We are on a tragic and terrible cycle of neighborhood violence, in which we no longer know why one neighborhood is an enemy of another, but where we have no choice and we are forced to show solidarity with others”, analysis Me Guillaume Halbique, lawyer of the latter.

“To judge and understand well, you have to take the height and take into account these dynamics that are put in place from an early age,” he believes.

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