The attacks of January 2015. The tears of Michel Catalano

I thought they were going to kill me. Michel Catalano underlined, Wednesday, September 16, at the bar, the many times he has believed to die January 9, 2015, held captive by Saïd and Chérif Kouachi. Two days after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, the Islamist terrorists had taken refuge in its printing press in Dammartin-en-Goële (Seine-et-Marne), where they were shot dead by the police.

Before the special assize court, which judges fourteen accused suspected of having provided logistical support to the perpetrators of attacks on the satirical weekly, Montrouge and Hyper Cacher, the business manager detailed this hostage-taking for about an hour and a half. And that still very painful for him.

“Hard to talk about, but necessary”

This Friday January 9, around 8:35 am, he is drinking coffee with the graphic designer, Lilian, when the Kouachi brothers arrive, armed with assault rifles. Michel Catalano sees them from a window and quickly understands that they are the wanted jihadists. He said to the young employee: Hide and turn off your cell phone.

The Terrorists arise ”, continues the printer, very moved. They take him to his office and ask him to call the gendarmerie, saying to himself ready to do battle ”. He obeys, strives to remain calm ”. And then try to save time by offering them a coffee. Are you really alone? Saïd Kouachi asks. Yes , he assures, wanting protect Lilian .

While one of the two brothers preach , this do not kill women and children […] , a patrol of gendarmes arrives. They left immediately, very excited, ”indicates Michel Catalano, who will hide in his office. Shots resound outside. Then I recognized a heavy step on the stairs […]. And they called me.

The printer comes back to them. He must treat Chérif Kouachi, injured neck, before the jihadists agree to release him after 10 a.m. He then joined the police, many arrivals. Shortly before 5 p.m., they neutralized the terrorists who had suddenly left the premises by opening fire.

And free Lilian, who remained hidden in a cabinet under a sink. To the great relief of Michel Catalano, whose main concern ”. It’s always “hard to talk about all this, but necessary , loose the business manager, in tears. Who r also calls all efforts to rebuild ”the printing press, devastated during the exchange of fire.


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