Who is the man who slapped French president and what happened to him?

Damien Tarel (R) said he slapped French President Emmanuel Macron 'instinctively and without thinking'.–File photo

A bystander slapped French President Emmanuel Macron across the face during his trip to southeast France on June 8.

A viral video of the incident on social media showed Macron approaching a barrier to greet a man who was later identified as Damien Tarel. Instead of shaking hands, Tarel slapped the 43-year-old French president across the face.

Macron’s bodyguards quickly intervened and caught two people.

Court Sentences Damien Tarel To Prison

A French court has sentenced Tarel to four months in prison for slapping President Macron.

A 28-year-old mediaeval history enthusiast, Tarel was handed a prison term of 18 months after slapping Macron, but 14-month term was suspended.

Tarel has been in custody since the assault, which a prosecutor called “an act of deliberate violence” and “absolutely unacceptable”.

Tarel was placed under arrest after the verdict from the court in Valence, a city in southern France. He risked a maximum three-year jail sentence and a fine of 45,000 euros ($55,000). He had waived his right to a full-blown trial.

Why Tarel Slapped Macron?

Tarel initially said he was angered by the French leader s “friendly and mendacious” look.

Later, the long-haired history buff and board games enthusiast told investigators that he “acted instinctively and without thinking” after waiting for Macron outside a school in Tain-l Hermitage village.

In court, he showed sympathy for the anti-government “yellow vest” movement and said he and two friends considered throwing an egg or a cream pie at Macron during his visit to the Drome region, reported the BFM news channel.

Macron is expected to seek re-election in next year’s presidential elections and public polls show he has a narrow lead over far-right leader Marine Le Pen.

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