27-year-old Flavien Moreau recently became the first French citizen to be sentenced for joining ISIS, receiving the maximum penalty of seven years in prison. And it’s all because he just couldn’t quit smoking.
According to France24, Moreau, a South Korean who was adopted by a French couple as an infant, had converted to Islam after a “turbulent life” in which he was convicted 13 times, including for armed robbery and assault. He was radicalized in 2012 and, hearing the call of jihad, decided to travel to Syria and join ISIS as a ground-level militant.
He only lasted two weeks:
“I really struggled with not smoking,” Moreau testified before the court. “It was forbidden by the katiba [a group of Islamist militants]. I had brought Nicorette gum with me, but it wasn’t enough. So, I left my gun with my emir and I left.”
Moreau briefly returned to France, but had not yet given up on his dream of returning to Syria. He tried on several occasions to find his way back to “the land of jihad,” but because his name was now known to counter-terrorist services in Europe and North Africa, he was refused entry to a number of countries.
Moreau was arrested in January 2013 after French authorities placed him under surveillance, and was sentenced on November 13th.
The obvious lesson here is that smoking can ruin your life.
[Image via Shutterstock.com]
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