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7,866 thoughts on “Not Forgetting the al-Hillis continued

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  • michael norton

    A 64-year-old man who recently returned to Annecy from Lombardy tests positive for coronavirus,
    ski centers seem to be hot spots for spreading this virus.

  • Good In Parts

    Michael Norton

    The quote from The Telegraph you posted on the previous page was interesting:-

    Brian Paddick, the former Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner, said that unless there was clear evidence that ruled out the other theories, it was “dangerous” to switch the focus of the investigation to this country.
    “It smacked to me of more of a political decision than a professional police one,” he said.
    “It was as if they did not want the reputation of France, and particularly this picturesque tourist spot, damaged by the suggestion that this could be anything to do with the French police or people in that area.”

    • michael norton

      Good In Parts
      “My general view has been that SM was targetted for a reason not directly connected with CS. This is probably why the gendarmes have not resolved the case.

      They investigated CS rather than SM.”

      It was so obviously about spying.

      My gut tells me the main target was Sylvain.
      He was probably shot first and very definitely the most times.
      Of course he was targeted.
      As Sylvain was on a pushbike, the killer did not randomly kill Mr.& and her “mother” and try to kill their eldest daughter as mere collateral.
      They were killed as a group.

      There was to be an exchange between a person of the al-Hilli party and Sylvain.

      The Uncle of C.S. has been keeping his head down lately?
      Does he still think he is a target?

    • Shelock

      Police seizes 8 tonnes of WWII weapons in Annency.

      If there’s any connection to this case?—police-seize-eight-tonnes-of-wwii-weapons-in-annecy%250A–.B1YjdTYP2v.html

      Have been here from the beginning in 2012.
      Forgot my nick. Big sorry
      Think it’s been Shelock

      Coming here from time to time to see whats going on or what’s new.
      Nice to see some old guys still hanging around trying to get some light in the dark!

      To all of you: Merry Christmas and a better New Year!
      Most of all: stay safe

      Shelock, hopefully

  • Good In Parts


    I cannot argue too much with your conclusions as they are pretty much what I used to think back in the day, before I ‘went local’ that is.

    But as the investigation progressed the probabilities shifted away from the SAH party being targetted.

    These days I would estimate the probabilities as follows:-

    P=0.7 for SM

    P=0.15 for the SAH party

    P=0.15 for other options

  • Good In Parts

    Mobylette Madness version 3

    SM is assumed to have been the principal target and that he was likely observed by the killer setting off from Ugine or when in transit on the cycle track.

    Alternately there could have been a ‘leak’ of his intentions.

    The original source could be SM, CS or someone else in or around the pharmacy that lunchtime. There was plenty of time from SM’s call to CS at approx 12 noon for this to occur.

    The extra lead time over simply spotting SM on the cycletrack would reduce time and location constraints and make identifying the killer more difficult.

    I suggest that the killer rode up the combe on a motorcycle via Arnand then left it concealed and approached le Martinet parking on foot.

    It seems likely that the killer was one of the two mobylette riders seen by CA heading up towards the combe. Probably the first one and certainly not the TBR.

    I suspect that the mobylette could have been a larger moto, say a supermoto type, rather than a true mobylette. Seen from the side by CA they could appear to have similar ride heights.

    The killer may have traveled from the D1508 via the Chemin de la Cordice then the Impasse de la Scierie to the edge of Arnand, spotting SM on the way but missing WBM because he approached Chevaline from a different direction.

    The killer may have made his escape via the Giez area, possibly using the strip of land that runs under the pylons from le reposoir to le pesset. Then briefly using the Chemin du Chateau on the way to the valley floor.

    14:40:00 – Approx time SM sets off from Ugine, heading along the cycle track

    14:52:00 – ONF1 (heading up) passes LFR
    14:52:30 – LMC (heading up) passes LFR

    15:00:00 – ONF2 meet LMC at second hairpin and exchange a few words
    15:00:30 – LMC start descent from Martinet parking
    15:01:00 – ONF2 start descent from Martinet parking
    15:09:00 – LMC (heading down) passes LFR
    15:09:30 – ONF2 (heading down) passes LFR

    15:09 to 15:15 – timeslot when MOTO ridden by the killer (heading up) passes CA (as his first mobylette)

    15:10:30 – SAH (heading up) passes LFR then turns back towards Arnand at the ‘Y’ junction by the old sawmill
    15:11:00 – SAH (heading down) passes CA before entering Arnand
    15:11:30 WBM spots SM crossing the T junction ahead of him as he enters Chevaline
    15:12:00 – WBM arrives at the T junction in Chevaline
    15:12:00 – SM (heading up) crosses LMC then ONF2 in Chevaline (both heading down) – this is when ONF2 saw SM
    15:12:10 – WBM (heading up) crosses LMC and ONF2 (both heading down) near the eglise in Chevaline
    15:16:00 – SM (heading up) passes LFR (but is not reportedly seen by him)
    15:16:30 – WBM (heading up) passes LFR (but is not reportedly seen by him)
    15:17:00 – TBR (heading up) passes CA (as his second mobylette)
    15:17:30 – TBR (heading up) overtakes WBM shortly after the old sawmill
    15:17:30 – SAH passes CA heading up towards the combe (as his second voiture)
    15:18:nn – SAH party last photo taken

    15:21:00 – SAH passes the sign by the old mill heading up the combe
    15:27:30 – ONF1 (heading down) crosses a motorcycle that has apparently just arrived at le Martinet parking – this is possibly the TBR and the description given by ONF1 may be inaccurate
    15:29:00 – ONF1 (heading down) crosses SAH (as the 4×4 seen by Zainab) but ONF1 reports seeing an X5 not a break
    15:29:00 – ONF1 (heading down) crosses SM (heading up) but does not report seeing him

    15:30:00 – ONF1 (heading down) crosses WBM (heading up) as the 4×4 seen by WBM but ONF1 does not report seeing WBM
    15:32:00 – SM/LR phone call ends
    15:36:00 – WBM (heading up) crosses TBR (heading down) near the un-named side track on the east side of the combe 550m down from le Martinet that leads up towards the Bois du Droz
    15:36:00 – ONF1 (heading down) passes CA then shortly later crosses PB et al near Arnand (as they head up) though apparently does not report doing so
    15:37:00 – TBR starts up the un-named side track on the west side of the Combe that leads to Mont Benoit (where he will hear the shots)
    15:37:00 – SAH arrival at Le Martinet
    15:37:00 – PB+2 (heading up) passe CA (his third voiture)
    15:38:30 – SM arrives at Le Martinet parking – shooting starts
    15:39:10 – shooting ends
    15:39:30 – Killer leaves Le Martinet parking then runs back towards wherever he left his motorcycle

    15:40:00 – WBM arrival at Le Martinet
    15:43:10 – WBM departs
    15:44:59 – First emergency call
    15:47:00 – WBM and PB return to Le Martinet
    15:48:00 – Second emergency call

    16:03:00 – Emergency services pass old mill

  • michael norton

    I had fancied this.

    Killer (clean) drives to Doussard or nearby semi busy place, parks car and go for a short walk.

    The al-Hilli party slowly drive up to Le Martinet.

    A motorcyclist turns up,
    with motorcycle clothes and helmet in the top box/panniers, plus weapons and ammunition.
    Killer gets into motorcycle garb, and is pillion passengered up, a little below Le Martinet, Killer dismounts, takes off motorcycle garb, and puts back in top box and takes weapons and ammo, and hides in trees, creeping up to Le Martinet.

    Motorcyclist then clears off.
    Motorcyclist passes S.M. then W.B.M. as he slowly descends.
    S.M. cycles up for his meet with a person in the al-Hilli party.
    Killer takes out S.M. and all adults of al-Hilli party bashes eldest girl with pistol.

    Killer takes whatever was to be exchanged between S.M. and al-Hilli person.
    Killer carefully descends the hill via the forest.

    At a point close to where he exits the forest, the Killer buries the weapons and ammo, wipes his hands with alcohol.
    Then slowly walks back to his car, clean.

  • michael norton

    There are several reasons for using a motorcyclist who is other than the killer.
    The slowly descending motorcyclist would be seen by other parties, one such being W.B.M.
    It could be assumed that the motorcyclist was the killer.
    Thus drawing the scent.
    However it was a very long time before a/the motorcyclist was brought in for questioning
    and that person was not named, they were invincible, it seemed but not involved.

  • Good In Parts

    michael norton

    You posted:-

    ‘There are several reasons for using a motorcyclist who is other than the killer. The slowly descending motorcyclist would be seen by other parties, one such being W.B.M. It could be assumed that the motorcyclist was the killer. Thus drawing the scent.’

    Yep, if you have gone to the trouble (and risk) of sending multiple motorcycles up the combe as a team, you might as well get the most benefit out of them, such as using one as a ‘spotter’ to warn of approaching traffic. I tried hard to get this to work in the timeline using the ‘slow riding’ MC seen by WBM, to no avail.

    My current views on the motorcycle sightings (excluding Janin’s) are as follows:-

    CA first mobylette sighting is the killer
    CA second mobylette sighting is the TBR
    ONF2 sighting is LMC
    ONF1 sighting is probably the TBR
    WBM sighting is the TBR

    • michael norton

      Another reason for the motorcyclist, to be other than the killer.
      The killer has demonstrated a complete mastery of his trade.
      The killer may be in the direct employ of a national government, while the motorcyclist may be an indirect recipient of pay.
      The motorcyclist carries the weapons and ammunition to the killer and takes him the short distance adjacent to the killing destination.
      If the job is called off before the killer takes control of the weapons and ammunition, the government of their employee has deniability.
      If the motorcyclist is stopped and caught, before contacting the killer, their is also a level of deniability by that government.
      After the killing and after the killer has deposited his weapons and ammunitions and cleaned his hands, there is a very high probability that he gets away, clean.
      After the incident and after the motorcyclist descends the combe, there is a fairly good chance he will get away but even if he is caught and detained, he is unlikely to be incarcerated for long. There will be deniability by the government of the killer.
      If the killer/motorcyclist is “discovered” after a year or so, he will magically not have been involved or implicated in anyway.

      • michael norton

        Two options.
        1) first option, Sylvain was followed.
        2) second option, intelligence was gleaned that Sylvain would be meeting the al-Hilli party up the combe at a certain time.

        I contend that it was option 2.

        If the intention was to intercept “the package” and also kill all the adults in the handing over of the package, in the same place at the same time, which might take less than a single minute, then the killer would either have to be one of the al-Hilli party or be hidden adjacent to the venue.

  • Good In Parts

    Alternative three.

    A hybrid of information and observation. For example, the killer could have seen CS leaving work in her car or maybe arriving home in her car and the killer could have inferred from information he had obtained that this half-day was likely to allow SM to go grimping.

    This partial prior knowledge proposal makes the timeline much slacker and easier to achieve but, if correct, it means the killer will be difficult to identify.

  • michael norton

    Let us suppose that a “package” was to have been passed between Sylvain and a person of the al-Hilli family, up the combe, at a set time.
    The “package” could be handed over, in a moment.
    If the “package” was to have been passed from the al-Hillis to Sylvain, why not kill Sylvain and take the “package” from him, whilst he is descending the combe on his own.
    Or why not follow him and see who he delivers the package to.

    If Sylvain is handing the package to the al-Hillis, why not kill him and take the package from him, while he is on his own before he gets to the al-Hilli party.

    The reason was, that a clear message was being imparted, this action will expressly not be permitted.
    They all had to be killed together and the “package” taken back to the owners/state.

    As the handing over of the package, would take only a moment, the killer already had to be on site.
    So the killer had to either be a person in the al-Hilli party or they were already hidden in the trees, loaded gun in hand.

  • Q

    The anniversary date of this awful event is approaching again. I’ve come back to say that I have not forgotten the al-Hillis. I hope the girls will reach for their dreams, as they continue the path to adulthood. They deserve happiness.

    Best wishes to them both.

    • David

      French media reported on Wednesday that the [Direction générale de la sécurité extérieure] DGSE agents were believed to have been plotting to kill a target, but not as part of their job duties. The agency is the French equivalent of the CIA

  • Good In Parts

    ToE at LMP ver 2

    For reference here is version 2 of my estimate of the timing of events at le Martinet parking.

    15:37:00 – SAH party arrive at le Martinet parking
    15:38:30 – SM arrives – shooting starts – WBM is approx 202m away
    15:39:00 – SAH reverses up against the bank – wheels begin to spin
    15:39:10 – shooting finishes – WBM is approx 112m away
    15:39:30 – killer starts to leave – WBM now approx 70m away
    15:39:45 – WBM notices Zainab staggering in the middle of the road and hears her cry out as she falls flat on her face
    15:40:00 – WBM arrives – moves Zainab to recovery position
    15:41:20 – WBM moves SM
    15:42:00 – WBM checks car,
    15:42:30 – WBM stops engine
    15:43:10 – WBM cannot get a signal so starts back down the combe to get help
    15:44:30 – WBM meets PB et al
    15:44:59 – first emergency call made by PB to the SP at the request of WBM
    15:46:00 – WBM plus PB et al start back up to le Martinet
    15:47:30 – WBM arrives back at le Martinet parking
    15:48:00 – PB wigs out and tries to assault WBM
    15:48:30 – approximate time PB makes second emergency call to the SP

    The shooting itself takes 40 seconds ie 21 shots at an average rate of one shot every two seconds. Two magazine changes are required.

    NB almost all of the shots occur when WBM is within 200m of le Martinet.

    NB the BMW digs-in to the bank for approx three minutes and thirty seconds before WBM turns off the engine.

  • Good In Parts

    “Three days before the eighth anniversary of the still mysterious Chevaline massacre, the corpse of a man was discovered Wednesday near a burned-out car, containing weapons, a few dozen meters from the site of the massacre. But there is currently no evidence to link these two tragedies.”

    Quote from teller report – possibly originally from Le Dauphin.

    The combe does seem to have more than it’s fair share of fatalities.

  • intp1

    PB wigs out and tries to assault WBM
    Looking back at this now, If WBM was the calm, upstanding, ex RAF Pilot hero the authorities portray, put in PBs shoes, coming across this mayhem would be a shock but doesn’t this seem odd? that your response would be more violence with an attack on another, innocent passer-by?
    What about WBM did this member of the public see or hear to prompt attempted violence on him?
    I don’t remember the excuse (an argument about using the phone?) but is this not unlikely, unexplained behavior?

    Re questions for Zainab: Good idea to ask them here. Surely one day curiosity will get the better of them and they will read this blog?
    Maybe one of them will sign up and tell all they know? For me, this Post is really all for those kids:
    Only One bad man – true? Ever seen him before? Description? From what direction? Did he arrive or leave or interact with any vehicles? Was anything spoken? Your Dad’s car was where, when you 1st saw him? When did you see the cyclist (SM) arrive?

  • Good In Parts


    ‘What about WBM did this member of the public see or hear to prompt attempted violence on him?’

    I seem to remember that when he went up to le Martinet with WBM he noticed that the victim’s BMW was UK registered and thus apparently somehow drew the conclusion that WBM was involved in the murders.

    • intp1

      And how much sense does that make?
      That in that grisly mess, you would even note the plate was UK and that even if you did, you would then proceed to presume, because WBM had a British accent, not that he was associated with the BMW party of victims, but that, he was a killer?

      Also, if you thought that WBM was a killer, capable of shooting up all those people, and therefore somehow armed, would you provoke such a person by physically going on the offensive? No, you would get the hell out of there with as little fuss as possible.

      What if that was in fact what PB tried to do and the altracation was in fact, instigated when PB arrived, by WBM, trying to prevent PB raising the alarm with an entirely different narrative to that which WBM was cooking up?
      PB never poked his head above the parapet again. WBM (Mover of bodies and muddier of forensic evidence pools, gross interferer with the crime scene, extracted immediately from France back to base despite being an obvious suspect and then very shady BBC/Home Office interviewee, His Silver Fern LTD books done by a Security Services-linked accountant ) was the only narrator that we ever heard from (or ever will). He set the timeline and who overtook who etc. and his peddled version of the timeline became the basis for all discussion here and elsewhere, then sold comprehensively to the public by the media.

      He is not the only thing, but WBM isn’t right and I think this part of the story could well be a clue to his being at least an obfuscator but was he also a Watcher? Minder? The bad man? Shot up the killers after arriving too late? certainly Cleaner up & reluctant media star.

  • Good In Parts


    ‘And how much sense does that make?’

    It must have been a terrifying situation, it should not be surprising that some witnesses behaved in ways that, with the benefit of hindsight, might not make sense.

    I have said it before and I shall say it again, in my view WBM is the best witness in this whole affair. Plus it is likely that he saved Zainab’s life.

  • Good In Parts

    From the D1508 to the ‘route dangereuse’ sign Zainab could have seen the following people:-

    The photographer
    The builders
    The Durchers
    CA and his wife
    Mobylette #1
    CA and his wife (again)

    Mobylette #1 is the most interesting to me, with the photographer a close second.

  • Good In Parts

    Anyone else got any pertinent questions that they would like the two girls to be asked?

    My focus has primarily been on Arnand and the mobylettes for obvious reasons, plus events there occurred approx 30 minutes before Zainab was shot and beaten around the head thus memories may have consolidated better than later ones.

    • Pink

      I am not hopeful on this one ..
      Does Z know who the gentlemen was that SAH had a heated conversation with at the campsite.

      Good in Parts October 5, 2020 at 16:04
      “Anyone else got any pertinent questions that they would like the two girls to be asked?”

  • intp1

    “FRANCE COULD HAVE AVOIDED A STRING OF EMBARRASSING RECENT FAILURES INVOLVING SECRET AGENTS if it had taken a leaf out of Britain’s military intelligence command structure, according to the former head of the country’s special forces”
    General Christophe Gomart WHO served as commander of special operations, COS, the French special forces, from 2011 to 2013:
    in that “SAS personnel serve as a wing of MI6 while remaining under military command “but Gomart’s COS are not part of the DGSE.
    (which has a paywall)

    “General Christophe Gomart served as commander of special operations, COS, the French special forces, from 2011 to 2013 but the same cannot be said for the Action Service, (SA) a secret army of 1,000 agents who conduct anti-terrorist activities, sabotage, abduction and assassination for the General Directorate for External Security (DGSE), the French MI6”

    Gomart: “Currently, we have two military units that end up on the ground without really knowing the other is there.”

    “Two retired Action Service agents were convicted to eight and 12 years in July for sharing intelligence with a foreign power – namely China – after a trial conducted in the utmost secrecy”
    I have often pondered could Chevaline been a misunderstanding between two “friendly” state agencies not knowing what the other was doing. Could Chevaline have been one of the ” string of embarrassing recent failures”?
    Was General Gomart fired because of such a cock up?

    And China. Could China have been involved?
    They are very aggressive in their appetite for Western technical secrets. Could one or more service have been setting bait to see what the opposition were after and another agency have been getting wind and intercepting?

    Just brainstorming Grist to the Mill – same timeline.

    • intp1

      Apparently these “revelations” come from Gomard’s recently published memoirs – Soldat de l’Ombre – au Coeur des Forces Speciales
      de Christophe Gomart et Jean Guisnel.

      Note also: I think a correction on my recent post regarding WBMs altercation. I called the motorist bystander and witness that WBM says challenged him: PB but going back in some old notes I see that we called him Philippe D. Which probably does not reflect his real identity but for the sake of consistency he should be PD?

  • Good In Parts


    PB reflects his real name. His surname is Bossi (or maybe Bossy).

    PD was an alias used to disguise his identity. It was only used for a few weeks by the press.

    Your posts about the french security service organisation are interesting but I have no time to comment at the moment.

  • Good In Parts

    Trois Huit

    A while back a poster here, probably M., suggested that SM did “faire les trois-huit”.

    If, that day, the killer was working the 6-2 shift in Ugine then he could have been in a position to see CS’s car back outside their home as he came off-shift and headed home. Thus he could infer that SM was going to go cycling. Alternately the killer could have directly seen SM on his fancy velo as he headed to the cycletrack (or indeed as he was riding along it).

    This, if correct, would tie-in nicely with my ‘Mobylette Madness version 3’ timeline posted here on April 21, 2020 at 11:32

    Les gendarmes seem to think that the killer lives near the lake.

    I tend to agree and would add that in my opinion the killer is likely to live near the cycletrack.

  • Good In Parts

    Shelock et al – Happy New Year!!

    There are a few reasons to be hopeful of a resolution to this case:-

    1) Les gendarmes have apparently recently been reviewing case files. Now this may just have been ‘make-work’ that could be safely done by the research department under covid lockdown rules however reviewing semi-closed files (that may have been excluded in error) is in my opinion an excellent idea given where we are in the investigation.

    2) The UK Police should have concluded their re-interview of Zainab by now but there does not appear to have yet been an announcement or leak about the outcome. Hopefully this means that they got ‘something’ and they are now doing the investigating.

  • Good In Parts

    Anybody else surprised that la proc insisted that the investigators still do not know how the killer entered or exited the combe?

    Given the state of play, I was certainly surprised that she made that claim.

    Maybe it’s part of a subtle disinformation strategy or maybe the investigators simply haven’t told her!

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