back to the Jamel Leulmi affair

The verdict fell on February 12, 2016. On appeal to the Paris Assize Court, Jamel Leulmi was sentenced to 30 years’ imprisonment, the same sentence as at first instance, found guilty of having killed his wife, Kathlyn Vasseur , after three months of marriage and having attempted to assassinate a second companion, Julie Derouette, to receive millions of euros in life insurance that he subscribed to his conquests. This Sunday evening, a number of ”Bring in the accused” rebroadcast on RMC Story traces this chilling story, with in the center the sordid personality of the one whom the media have nicknamed ”The Black Widower”, ”The Beard Bleue de l’Essonne” or even ”The serial seducer”.

Six years earlier, a few days before Christmas 2009, Julie Derouette, 26, arrived in Marrakech. She agreed to briefly leave her two daughters, from a previous union, to join her new fiancé, Jamel Leulmi, who arrived the day before. He warned her: he may not be there to pick her up at the airport, around 4 p.m. All she has to do is take a taxi and go and wait for him at the hotel. What she does.

Left for dead in the desert

This muscular 30-year-old Franco-Algerian, ex-professor of civil engineering in a technical high school converted into a business manager, also asked him to go and rent a car. Indeed, Morocco would only be a stage, the man having promised his pretty girlfriend that they would then go to Algeria so that he could introduce her to his family with a view to a future marriage. Moreover, when he arrives in the room, he immediately pulls out a big ring and asks Julie to marry him. She accepts. Without further ado, he convinces her to leave for Algeria, but in two cars: he in his, she in the rental vehicle. All she has to do is follow him… She loses sight of him at the second roundabout. It was then that she was hit several times from behind. Victim of a road trip, she was then beaten up by several attackers, who left her for dead in the desert. Suffering from a double spinal fracture that left her with lifelong scars, she survived at the cost of intense rehabilitation.

However, throughout his recovery, his prince charming hardly visits him. Bedridden, Julie begins to have suspicions. Especially since, just before the trip, her future husband had made her sign several life insurance contracts for his benefit, with insurers and on the internet, for astronomical sums. Contracts, copies of which were stolen during the burglary of his home. No valuables were stolen.

Seducer, smooth talker, greedy, manipulative and widower

She files a complaint with the police. By digging a little, the investigators discover that the thirty-year-old, seducer, smooth talker, greedy and manipulative, is a widower. His first wife, Kathlyn Vasseur, died in January 2007 in a car accident. This 26-year-old Pôle Emploi counselor quickly fell in love with the son of her neighbors in Brétigny-sur-Orge, in Essonne. After an express wedding in a small committee, they had gone to Algeria to celebrate. The day after their return to France, during a bike ride, a driver allegedly threw Kathlyn into the ditch. She died seven days later, without having regained consciousness. However, she too had taken out several juicy death insurance contracts for the benefit of her companion. He then pocketed more than a million euros.

The folders are now linked. The investigations then lead to a third woman, Karine, his mistress met in a swingers club, who has also just signed the same type of contracts, and even a fourth, Céline, who would be his lifelong companion: she was his girlfriend before his marriage to Kathlyn and then again after her death. If she recognizes that their relationship as a couple was almost non-existent, she admits to having suffered from the many infidelities of Jamel, which she would have learned during the instruction. Notably, she never took out any insurance policy for her benefit.

More than ten million euros

Arrested in 2010, the suspect was indicted, tried and sentenced to 30 years’ imprisonment in 2014 by the Essonne Assize Court for murder, attempted murder and fraud. A sentence confirmed on appeal, two years later in Paris. The Advocate General, who had requested life, had calculated that if Julie and Karine had died in an accident like Kathlyn, Jamel Leulmi would have received, in total for the three, more than ten million euros.

At each trial, the accused has repeatedly maintained his innocence. He has always claimed to be the victim of a series of dramatic coincidences.

”Bring in the accused” devoted to ”Bluebeard of Essonne” (2021), a documentary presented by Rachid M’Barki and Dominique Rizet, rebroadcast this Sunday July 24 from 9:05 p.m. on RMC Story.

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