French prosecutors believe that Stars of David painted with allegedly anti-Semitic graffiti across Paris were intended to support Israel.
The turn in the investigation follows the arrest of a couple from Moldova who admitted making the stencil used earlier this week.
It was used to daub the facades of properties in what originally looked like a disturbing echo of the Kristallnacht pogrom organized in Nazi Germany in the run-up to the Holocaust.
The couple formally face four years in prison for “damaging property with reference to race or religion”.
The couple from Moldova, who were not named, said they were acting “at the direction of Russia” and had no connection to groups in France.
After a court case, they now face deportation while the Paris police are looking for another couple with a similar background.
Dozens of blue Stars of David (pictured) were found painted on buildings in several areas of Paris and surrounding suburbs overnight
Around 60 blue stars were found as graffiti on several buildings in the 14th arrondissement of Paris. Pictured: A woman walks along a building marked with stars
Paris prosecutors have opened an investigation into damage to property aggravated by circumstances of origin, race, ethnicity or religion, French media reported
A law enforcement source in Paris said: “It could be that the stars were actually painted in support of the State of Israel in the fight against Hamas.”
Referring to the yellow stars the Nazis used to identify Jews in cities like Paris during World War II, the source said: “The stars painted this week were blue ones, similar to those on the Israeli flag.” They were no yellow ones.
“There is no indication that any of the buildings attacked were actually inhabited by Jews – in that sense they were just random walls.”
Since the Hamas terrorist attack in Israel on October 7, more than 800 anti-Semitic acts have been reported across France and 414 arrests have been made.
There was also a rise in Islamophobic acts as Muslims reported attacks related to Israel’s invasion of Gaza.