Jack Quann
Jack Quann

10.57 22 Jul 2021


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The uncle of French filmmaker Sophie Toscan Du Plantier says Schull in Cork is becoming 'Baieyland', due to people's fascination with Ian Bailey.

He also criticises a recent documentary about the murder of his niece.

It comes after two, separate pieces aired about the case: Jim Sheridan's 'Murder at the Cottage' on Sky Crime, and the Netflix production of 'Sophie: A Murder in West Cork'.

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Sophie's uncle Jean-Pierre Gazeau told Pat Kenny the Jim Sheridan production presented Ian Bailey as a victim.

"My reactions were contrasted: because for the documentary of Jim Sheridan - besides the artistic quality of the documentary - I don't agree about the content.

"For me, it appeared eventually it was presenting Ian Bailey as a victim.

"On the other hand, [the] Netflix documentary was made in collaboration with the family... I am firmly satisfied by the quality of the documentary on that by all reactions we got after the release of the documentary".

Mr Gazeau also says he believes Schull is becoming a version of Disneyland for Ian Bailey.

"Ian Bailey has a specific character... a deeply narcissist character.

"In some sense, what happens now, the region of Schull is becoming - because of the documentaries and so on - is becoming a touristic place.

"And it's a kind of 'Baileyland' - like we have Disneyland, the people want to see him.

"And in some sense he is happy with that".

Jean-Pierre Gazeau holds an image of his niece, Sophie Tuscan Du Plantier, at the launch of of ASSOPH - the Association For the Truth About Sophie's Murder - in Dublin in 2008. Jean-Pierre Gazeau holds an image of his niece, Sophie Tuscan Du Plantier, at the launch of of ASSOPH - the Association For the Truth About Sophie's Murder - in Dublin in 2008. Picture by: Mark Stedman/RollingNews.ie

Back in 2019, a French court found Ian Bailey guilty of murder and sentenced him to 25 years in prison.

The French court charged Mr Bailey with voluntary homicide, and he was convicted in absentia.

Mr Gazeau says Ireland and France should be working together.

"Any question on the case is legitimate, but we should not forget that for the French justice Ian Bailey has been recognised as a killer and has been condemned to 25 years of jail.

"If Ireland had extradited Ian Bailey, Ian Bailey would have the right to have a new trial: but at the moment, he is free - completely free in Ireland.

"We are two European countries, and we are part of the same European Union.

"So there are special agreement in the judicial cooperation - Ireland respects its signature fulfilling the European Judicial Collaboration.

"On the other hand, I don't agree at all about the fact the DPP never gave sound arguments not to prosecute Ian Bailey".

On the Garda investigation into his niece's murder, he says questions remain.

"I think certainly there were some mistakes at the every beginning, because that region of Ireland wasn't absolutely used to this kind of event.

"Why Ian Bailey was really fast considered as a prime suspect - there were circumstantial evidences of course.

"But what about the scratches? What about the schedule of Ian Bailey during the night?

"What about the fact he confessed to a series of people he did it? He cannot find the kind of excuse as black humour - I don't believe that".

Uncle of Sophie Toscan Du Plantier: Schull becoming like 'Baileyland' for tourists

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Main image: Sophie Tuscan Du Plantier's uncle Jean-Pierre Gazeau is pictured at the launch of of ASSOPH - the Association For the Truth About Sophie's Murder - in Dublin in 2008. Picture by: Mark Stedman/RollingNews.ie

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Baileyland Jean Pierre Gazeau Jim Sheridan Murder Murder At The Cottage Pat Kenny Schull Sophie: A Murder In West Cork Sophie Toscan Du Plantier The Unsolved Murder Of Sophie Toscan Du Plantier

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