2016 Brussels terror attacks trial: Belgian athlete Kevin Borlée exempted from jury duty

On Wednesday morning, the Belgian athlete Kevin Borlée appeared before the Brussels Court of Assizes as one of some 700 prospective jurors summoned for the trial of the 2016 Brussels terror attacks. However, the presiding judge Laurence Massart exempted him as a juror. "Not for medical reasons, as you can imagine", Massart commented.

Around 10:20 am on Wednesday, the court started reviewing summoned prospective jurors' exemption requests. Many argued they could not be jurors during the months-long trial for family or professional reasons. However, the court president refused most exemption requests.

Some exemption requests were accepted on medical grounds or due to a close connection to the events. Other candidates were exempted because they no longer live in the Brussels region. One woman was exempted because she recently lost her father and said she would not be capable of following the trial.

Kevin Borlée, a Belgian sprinter specialising in the 400-metre dash, was also exempted from jury duty. Borlée won bronze at the 2011 World Championships and is the 2010 European Champion in the 400 metres. He qualified for the Summer Olympics 400 metres finals in 2012 and was a semi-finalist at the 2008 Summer Olympics.

The court will assemble a jury of twelve effective jurors and twenty-four alternates. After reviewing all exemption questions, the names of the remaining prospective jurors will be placed in an urn for lots to be drawn. Both the defence and prosecution may then each challenge eighteen effective or alternate jurors without stating a reason. The presiding judge can also challenge jurors if more than eight have been drawn of the same sex. After jury selection, the trial of the 2016 Brussels terror attacks will start in earnest on 5 December.




Related stories

Website preview
2016 Brussels terror attacks: Trial launches Wednesday with jury assembly
The Belgian Court of Assizes will on Wednesday assemble the jury for the long-awaited trial of the 2016 Brussels terror suspects. Delayed nearly two months due to a dispute about the glass boxes constructed for the defendants, the trial is set to start in earnest on 5 December.
Website preview
2016 Brussels terror attacks: The ten on trial
Ten defendants are standing trial for the 2016 Brussels attacks in which 32 people were killed and around 340 injured. Jury selection for the trial starts on 30 November and the entire procedure is expected to last nine months. Among the ten on trial are ringleaders Salah Abdeslam, Mohammed Abrini and Ossama Krayem, who earlier this year were convicted of orchestrating the November 2015 Paris attacks. Here is an overview of the defendants:
Website preview
2016 Brussels terror attacks: Investigation overview
Nearly seven years since the 2016 Brussels terror attacks, the trial of ten male suspects will be launched in Belgium on 30 November. After a judicial investigation that took over three years, in September 2021 the Brussels indictment chamber referred ten suspects to Belgium’s Assize Court, which deals with the most serious cases.
Website preview
22 March 2016: The day Belgium was rocked by the deadliest terror attack in its history
On Tuesday 22 March 2016 at 7:58 am, two terrorists detonated suicide vests in the departure hall of Brussels Airport. It marked the beginning of a long, frightening day that left 32 dead and some 340 injured. Now Belgium embarks on its biggest ever trial, with ten defendants facing prosecution for the atrocities carried out almost seven years ago.

Get updates in your mailbox

By clicking "Subscribe" I confirm I have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.

About belganewsagency.eu

Belga News Agency delivers dependable, rapid and high-quality information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from Belgium and abroad to all Belgian media. The information covers all sectors, from politics, economics and finance to social affairs, sports and culture, not to mention entertainment and lifestyle.

Every day, our journalists and press photographers produce hundreds of photos and news stories, dozens of online information items, plus audio and video bulletins, all in both national languages. Since the end of March 2022 English has been added as a language.

For public institutions, businesses and various organisations that need reliable information, Belga News Agency also offers a comprehensive range of corporate services to meet all their communication needs.


Arduinkaai 29 1000 Brussels