Kerviel's appeal trial: “He was not alone”

Becoming more personal — he even once used Kerviel's first name, Jerome, though quickly reversed to Mister Kerviel — he went on to state that the bank's witnesses always used intricate explanations to confuse the Court, that the bank orchestrated a media campaign against his client, and that there was a marketplace and political solidarity in favor of the venerable bank. All this may be true, but it sounded more like a blanket statement.

Only deepening the malaise, Kerviel left the courtroom a few times, white as a sheet - may be because of the heat, or because he was nervous.  Koubbi went on, his walking stick falling on the parquet floor of the Court. He was now openly emotional, even lyrical, as he called Kerviel “a generous, honest human being”, and confessed he had been “honored” to defend him - when he finally asked for his acquittal.

“And even if you find him guilty, don't order him to pay damages or to go to prison,” he implored. “He has been in prison for four years already (since the loss was made public), he has had no life, his reputation has been tarnished, his family has been harassed, his mother has fallen ill,” he said, going here, there, and everywhere. And the crowd applauded!

No wonder the no-non-sense head judge was appalled as she closed the trial. “We will ponder, debate and give our verdict on October 24th, 2012,” she said.

Time to go on recess for the Court, and time for the lawyers to play the media crowd. Kerviel had regained his composure. He will “serenely” await the verdict, he said. Oh, really?

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