French post office bank manager faces sack despite robbery acquittal

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Rédouane Ikil, the manager of a branch at France's postal bank, was accused of being involved in the robbery of two branches and spent three years on remand. Earlier this summer Ikil was acquitted of all charges but his long legal and personal nightmare is still not over: now his employers the French post office La Poste have begun proceedings to dismiss him. Michaël Hajdenberg reports.

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His joy when it finally came was short-lived. Having spent three years on remand, on June 30th post office manager Rédouane Ikil was acquitted by the criminal court in Toulouse, south-west France, of charges that he had fed information to robbers who held up a post office branch. But on July 13th Ikil received a letter from his employers, the French post office La Poste, summoning him for a formal meeting pending dismissal. Though he had been cleared by the courts, his employer have nonetheless found him to be at fault.Until he was taken into custody Rédouane Ikil, now 45, had enjoyed a fine career in the public enterprise. He had joined at the age of 24 as an apprentice financial advisor and moved up through the organisation to become a branch manager with La Banque Postale, the bank which is part of the French post office La Poste.