The investigation into the savage murder of Eliot Charlet has made spectacular progress. After four days of police custody in the premises of the Central Office for the Suppression of Violence against Persons (OCRVP) in Nanterre (Hauts-de-Seine), six men were indicted this Thursday evening for “murder in an organized gang” by an examining magistrate in Paris. Five were placed in pre-trial detention while the sixth emerged free from the court under judicial supervision. All are suspected of being involved in the death of the 24-year-old Breton boy, found strangled and his body partially charred in a forest in Croatia on March 20, 2020. The young man, who used to travel as a tourist to foreigner, had declared to his relatives that he wanted to work in the restaurant industry and had taken a flight at the end of February 2020 for the Croatian capital before settling on the Adriatic coast. He then disappeared and his remains were discovered a month later in a clearing.

Erwan G denies any involvement

After two years of investigations, a scenario around a death insurance scam is emerging. Among the six suspects indicted is Erwan G., a crook nicknamed the Lyonnais Madoff known for multiple financial shenanigans of all kinds. He had met Eliot Charlet by chance during a carpooling trip. According to the track retained at this stage, Erwan G. would have convinced the victim to take out death insurance for an amount of 1.2 million euros for his benefit. It was then planned that the young Breton would pretend to be dead in Croatia in an accident by establishing a false death certificate. He would then have lived under a new identity and, once the money was released, would have shared the fruit of the contracts with his fellow scammer. But what was supposed to be a scam, certainly audacious but painless, turned into an assassination for an as yet undetermined motive.

In police custody, Erwan G. formally denied any involvement in the murder of Eliot Charlet. Investigators found that the scammer traveled to Croatia twice in late February 2020 and early March. During his hearings, the latter explained that he had simply come to recover money borrowed from the young Breton – bank movements of a few thousand euros were discovered on the statements of the victim – and that he returned in France by leaving him alive. An autopsy report conducted by a Croatian medical examiner had established the murder of Eliot Charlet on March 19. On this date, Erwan G. had already left the Balkan country. But doubts still remain about the actual date of the murder of the young Breton and it is not excluded that it occurred earlier. Contacted, Erwan G.’s lawyer, Me Matthieu Chavanne, did not wish to speak. The agrefin lived in Mulhouse (Haut-Rhin) at the time of his arrest on Tuesday.

The exact reasons for the murder of Eliot Charlet remain to be clarified. DR

The five others indicted include a former fellow prisoner of Erwan G., a certain Yannick D., from Seine-Saint-Denis. They met in Villepinte prison while Erwan G. was serving a sentence for multiple scams, including death insurance, while the second had been implicated for drug trafficking. Justice wonders if Erwan G. would not have asked his friend to carry out the young Breton. The three other suspects are young people from a city of Rosny-sous-Bois, close to Yannick D. This trio had curiously made a journey by car twice to the Slovenian-Croatian border. In police custody, they said that they intended to recover something in Croatia, without it being known what exactly but documents or a debt of money are mentioned, but that they did not manage to enter the territory for lack of papers. Yannick D. like the three young travelers also denied any link with the murder of Eliot Charlet, whom they say they do not know. “What is troubling in this case is that my client and three of his acquaintances are being charged with murder in an organized gang when none of them went to Croatia at the time of the events” , reacts Me Philippe Herbeaux, lawyer for Yannick D.

The motive – financial and villainous – of Eliot’s murder now appears clear, it remains to be seen who precisely ordered it and how many people have blood on their hands. Two other suspects taken into custody on Tuesday by OCRVP police officers were released without charges on Thursday.

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