The Wall Street Journal reports (paywall, sorry) that France is considering a slate of new antiterrorism laws, including at least one prevention-oriented measure that appears to track 18 U.S.C. 2339D (making it a felony to obtain military-style training from a designated foreign terrorist organization). The announcement comes in the aftermath of a major wave of arrests across France over the weekend:
On Sunday, Mr. Hollande met with Muslim and Jewish leaders, and said in an address that a new antiterrorism law, which was presented to government ministers last week, would be submitted to Parliament as soon as possible.
The law would empower French authorities to pursue French citizens who commit terrorist acts or receive terrorist training overseas, even if they haven’t committed crimes in France.
It will be very interesting to see how the training provision is fleshed out, including whether it applies without respect to the provider of the training or instead is limited in some fashion to a designated list of proscribed groups ala the US model, and also whether it makes any serious attempt to define the precise type of training that is forbidden or instead resorts to a catch-all term such as “military-type” training (also as in the US model). Interesting too to see what sort of mens rea will be used. Any Francophone readers are encouraged to weigh in on this if and when draft text is available, all the more so if they care to comment on the extent to which such “anticipatory crime” measures might or might not be out-of-the-ordinary in the French penal code.