A female Islamist-linked cell responsible for attempting to ignite a firebomb outside Notre Dame Cathedral in 2016 have been jailed, with some of them sentenced to 25 and 30 years in jail years, The Guardian reported.
On the night of 3 September 2016, 22-year-old Ines Madani and 32-year-old Ornella Gilligmann parked a grey Peugeot 607 on a street in front of busy restaurants near Notre Dame Cathedral in central Paris. They poured diesel over the car that was packed with six gas canisters, and tried to set it on fire with the use of a cigarette, but did not succeed. Investigators later said that the choice of less flammable diesel fuel, rather than standard petrol, prevented an attack that could have killed or injured at least 60 people in a nearby bar.
Inès Madani and Ornella Gilligmann, were sentenced to 30 years and 25 years in jail respectively, while their associates Sarah Hervouet and Amel Sakaou were sentenced to 20 years. Another defendant, Samia Chalel, was given 5 years for allegedly helping to hide Madani, the main figurant in the case.
Madani, who reportedly turned to religious studies after being sexually abused at the age of 17, lured the fellow defendants to join the plot on social networks, while posing as a male Islamist militant who was seeking a bride upon his return from Syria. She was reported to be in contact with key Daesh* fighters in Syria, while trying to recruit other women to join the movement.
It has also been stated that a French member of Daesh*, Rachid Kassim, coordinated the Notre Dame attack from his base in Syria. He is currently on trial in absentia.
* Daesh (ISIL/ISIS/Islamic State/IS), a terrorist group banned in Russia and a wide number of other countries.