Belgium Jewish museum killer, accomplice found guilty and face life in prison

(JTA) — A Belgian court convicted Mehdi Nemmouche, a French Islamist, of murdering four people in a terrorist attack at the Jewish Museum of Belgium in 2014.

Nemmouche’s accomplice, Nacer Bendrer, was also found guilty of aiding the attacker during the reading of the verdict Thursday. They have not been sentenced yet but are facing life in prison, according to Le Vif.

The World Jewish Congress in a statement wrote that it welcomes the verdict.

It “at last brings a semblance of justice to the loved ones of those who were so brutally murdered on May 24, 2014, and to the Jewish community as a whole,” wrote Robert Singer, the organization’s executive vice president.

Two of the victims were Israeli tourists on vacation in Belgium. Nemmouche’s defense team promoted during the trial a conspiracy theory claiming they were Mossad operatives.

“It is regrettable that this trial was replete with unbelievable conspiracy theories and demonization of Israel on the part of certain attorneys and the suspect, and we can only hope that the judges have recognized the very dangerous nature of allowing these tropes to enter a court of law,” Singer said.

Nemmouche, who had fought with Islamists in Syria, shot the victims with a semi-automatic weapon, killing them and leaving the scene within the space of 90 seconds. He was arrested with the murder weapon six days later in Marseille, France.