Hundreds of French farmers have called for the release of a farmer who shot and seriously wounded a 19-year-old.
The demonstration occurred outside the Court of Appeal in the north-eastern city of Reims on Thursday (13 February).
Members of the agricultural group Fédération Nationale des Syndicats d’Exploitants Agricoles (FDSEA) planned the protest.
Farmer Jean-Louis Leroux is being investigated after he seriously wounded the teenager, who is now in hospital in a coma, the BBC reports .
The 46-year-old, who says he has been a victim of robberies in the past, admits firing his shotgun as he purportedly believed people were trying to steal diesel from his farm.
A statement by the FDSEA said: “Victim of around fifty thefts since 2015, Jean-Louis Leroux suffered a new incident in Ambrières, on his farm, during the night of January 31 to February 1 2020.
“Our thoughts are with the two families concerned and their relatives who are living in a very difficult situation. We hope for the young man's speedy recovery.
“We wish to support the family of Jean-Louis Leroux for the financing of the costs of his defence.
“A great movement of solidarity from his friends and from the agricultural and rural world is committed to his side.”
Following the court hearing on Thursday, Jean-Louis Leroux has been released from detention until his trial date.