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Blogger tried to turn Polytechnique killer into hero to inspire men, court hears

“Here, we have comments that are the worst form of hatred, where men are invited to kill women,” laments prosecutor Roxane Laporte.

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Jean-Claude Rochefort wanted to make the man who carried out the École Polytechnique massacre a hero and inspire a younger generation of men to kill more women, the prosecutor in the case of the anti-feminist blogger said on Friday.

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Rochefort, 73, is on trial at the Montreal courthouse, where he is accused of incitement to hatred against women. He was arrested by Montreal police on December 5, 2019, the day before the 30th anniversary of the 1989 massacre of 14 women at Montreal’s École Polytechnique. The shooter, Marc Lépine, also injured 14 other people before committing suicide. Police found a letter inside his jacket stating that he intended to kill feminists.

During his testimony this week before Superior Court Judge Pierre Labrie, Rochefort admitted to being the author of the articles published on four blogs, between September and December 2019, including one titled “Marc Lépine 2”. The defendant said the articles he published were “exaggerations” intended to criticize “unreasonable feminists” and should not have been taken seriously.

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He also said he believed the articles he published had reached over 60,000 subscribers before his arrest.

During her closing arguments on Friday, prosecutor Roxane Laporte said the “only conclusion the court can draw” is that Rochefort’s use of images of Lépine saying what Rochefort wrote, in the form of a comic strip , is that he expressed hatred towards women.

“It’s not sarcasm. It’s not a joke,” Laporte said, noting that Rochefort admitted he writes for INCELs, “involuntarily celibate” men who look down on women.

“The words came from the mouth of a man who killed women – a man well known for that,” Laporte said, referring to the fact that most articles published by Rochefort used a photo of Lépine’s face with the Rochefort’s words wrapped in a comic book. speech bubble in the form of a book.

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“In this case, we are not faced with unpleasant comments. Here we have comments that are the worst form of hate, where men are urged to kill women,” Laporte said.

She pointed out that what Rochefort wrote was often accompanied by photos denigrating women. Some were images of dismembered or decapitated women and others of women wearing little clothing. Other elements included the Nazi swastika.

“Among the four blogs (published between September and December 2019), there was nothing positive or neutral for women,” Laporte said.

The prosecutor asked Labrie to take note of one item, “Marc Lépine is an INCEL lord”, where Rochefort used an image of Lépine saying universities were being attacked by feminists and suggested they should be burned down. It is this element that prompted the security of the University of Quebec in Montreal to file a complaint with the Montreal police. At the time, a professor from UQAM was part of the preparations in 2019 to commemorate the 14 women who died.

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“It’s very violent and it targets women,” Laporte said, saying it was one of many examples of the hatred displayed by Rochefort.

Rochefort testified that what he wrote was a reaction to comments from feminists he deemed extreme in their views. But Laporte noted that he often referred to women and girls in general.

“He chose to use the word woman, the word girl, the word female, the word bitch, the word bitch, the word hypocrite. He chose to use those words to define women,” Laporte said. “It was a choice he made to publish them and he only published them once. He published them about thirty times on four blogs in English and French.

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