Prosecutors say left-wing extremists are prime suspects in power line sabotage - New Style Motorsport

French prosecutors in Grenoble have identified far-left extremists as the most likely suspects in the sabotage of a power line on a bridge that was damaged by arson last month.

The arson attack on the Brignoud bridge, which crosses the Isère river near the city of Grenoble, took place last April and left more than 5,500 people in the nearby municipality of Villard-Bonnot without electricity, as the bridge contained power lines that were damaged as a result of the fire.

There was some initial speculation that far-left extremists were linked to the attack after an anarchist symbol was found at the scene of another attack on a nearby high-voltage substation just days earlier. Now the Grenoble prosecutor’s office has formally stated that left-wing extremists are the most likely suspects in the case, the newspaper the parisian reports.

Fire damage has made the bridge unstable for car traffic and it is unlikely to reopen until November, affecting some 27,000 daily commuters who are forced to find alternative ways to cross the Isère river. It remains open to pedestrians and cyclists.

Camille, a local who uses the bridge, says she now crosses and meets a friend in a car to complete her journey.

“It is the best solution I have found. My travel time has gone from 5 minutes to half an hour, or even an hour in the morning and afternoon, when the detours are saturated with people who, like me, drive to work. The double penalty with the gas price explosion,” said Camille, who works as an engineer at Crolles.

In particular, the attack also affected local factories that produce semiconductors, such as Soitec, which was forced to temporarily close its factory due to the bridge fire.

“The incidents of the last two days have occurred outside [semiconductor] companies. Everyone recognizes that we are a strategic industry for the country, but we see that today malicious acts and attacks can target this industry, so we need a collective reflection to achieve the security of the entire supply chain of industrial sites. ”, Thomas Piliszczuk, of Soitec. executive vice president of global business, he said.

If far-left extremists are found to be behind the attack, it would be just the latest act of sabotage related to anarchist extremist activity, some of which extremists have taken credit for.

Last week, fiber optic lines were cut in what were also believed to be coordinated attacks on French infrastructure, leading to major internet outages and connectivity problems in wide areas of the country.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email ctomlinson(at)

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