Cedric Herrou, a French farmer in Roya Valley in Southeast France has been fined $3200 for helping refugees enter France.
This isn’t Herrou’s first time being arrested. An olive farmer and immigrant activist, Herrou has been helping refugees cross the border into France since 2015. It’s reported that he has helped over 250 migrants cross over into France. Though he’s been fined, Herrou does not consider his activism a crime.
“You can’t ask me to stop something that I’m not responsible for,” said Herrou. “I’m not calling them to come from Eritrea or Sudan, they’re fleeing because of war and dictatorship.”
Immigration and the refugee crisis has been a large topic of debate between candidates running for president in France. Front National leader Marine Le Pen is calling for closed borders, while candidate Emmanuel Macron has praised German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open door policy.
Despite what the candidates have to say, it seems that some French citizens like Herrou are willing to take matters into their own hands: