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Top nationalist lawyer shot dead in Corsica

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Top nationalist lawyer shot dead in Corsica
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One of Corsica’s most prominent lawyers is among two men who have been shot dead on the French island.

63-year-old Antoine Sollacaro, who had defended many Corsican nationalists and also acted for politicians, was gunned down at a service station in Ajaccio.

The other man, named as Jean-Dominique Allegrini-Simonetti, a former nationalist activist, was found dead in northern Corsica.

There have been 15 such murders this year.

The lawyer’s shooting was apparently captured on security camera. Two men on a motorbike pulled up; one opened fire several times.

Sollacaro’s wife came to the scene. “A lawyer is not a bandit, he’s just a lawyer” she was heard to say.

The reason for the killings is not known but other murders have been linked to criminal gangs, some with nationalist connections.

“What’s deplorable is that he was certainly killed because of the symbol he represented. In other words, a free, brave lawyer who followed his cases right through,” said Marc Maroselli, Chairman of Ajaccio’s Bar Association.

In one of Corsica’s most famous cases Sollacaro defended Yvan Colonna, currently serving life for assassinating the island’s prefect in 1998.