French Police Detain 6-Year-Old Girl At Airport For Three Days Over Passport

| by Kathryn Schroeder

A 6-year-old girl was held for three days by French airport police after they suspected she was flying with a fake passport.

The girl, born in Paris, France, was flying unaccompanied from Cameroon to Charles de Gaulle Airport in France, where her mother was waiting for her, reports Inquisitr.

Upon arriving at the airport, the girl was detained by officials because they did not think her passport photo resembled the child.

For three days, she was held in a special police daycare before appearing in front of a judge. It was only after she was able to identify her mother in the crowd, and identify friends and classmates from a photo, that the judge released her.

French authorities claim the police were merely doing their job to protect children from trafficking, reports The Daily Mail.

“The judge said it was all a mistake' [sic] and ordered the girl's release,” lawyer Sidonie Leoue said. "It's inadmissible that minors are held there like this, especially for a reason such as this."

Police are still analyzing the girl’s passport to make sure it is valid, and confiscated it pending further investigation, Interior Ministry spokesperson Pierre-Henry Brandet said.

"Verifying the identity of a child, establishing with certainty the link between the (child) and the person traveling with them or waiting for them at the airport, is about protecting the child against trafficking, kidnapping," Brandet said.

Some believe that the handling of cases involving the detainment of children are happening due to a suspicious “state of thinking” about migrants.

“It is an incident that should be condemned, and should lead to reflection,” Pierre Henry, head of migrants’ rights group France Terre d’Asile said.

According to the girl’s mother, it was a traumatic experience for the child.

“She doesn't stop talking about it,” she said. “She asks each time: 'But why are they talking about me? Why did they do this to me?'”

Sources: Inquisitr, The Daily Mail

Photo Credit: bizmac/Flickr