A light-fingered postman in Paris regularly helped himself to the contents of parcels and packages, until a simple but ingenious trap caught him out.

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OFFBEAT

Thieving postman caught by sequin trap

A light-fingered postman in Paris regularly helped himself to the contents of parcels and packages, until a simple but ingenious trap caught him out.

Thieving postman caught by sequin trap
Nina Matthews

For several months, the contents of packages going through a sorting office in east Paris were going missing. 

Gift cards and restaurant vouchers were among the items that were disappearing, yet investigators were unable to identify the culprit.

Finally, a plan to catch the thief was hatched using shiny and sticky sequins.

These were loaded into a package so that anyone sticking in their hand would find themselves covered in the incriminating sparkly discs.

The dishonest postman fell for the trap, in full view of his colleagues.

The man confessed he had been stealing from packages around twice a week for two years, earning him around €250 a month ($337).

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OFFBEAT

France’s mystery rooftop panther stolen from zoo

A black panther rescued from rooftops near the northern city of Lille last week has been stolen from the zoo where it was taken after capture, officials said.

France's mystery rooftop panther stolen from zoo
Photo: AFP/ Sapeurs Pompiers du Nord

The feline was seized overnight from the zoo in Maubeuge near the Belgian border, the city's mayor, Arnaud Decagny, told AFP on Tuesday.

“This animal was the only target,” Decagny said, adding that “considerable efforts” were made to force locks and avoid security systems.

Zoo personnel are worried about the young panther's health, “which is rather delicate because he lacks strength,” the mayor added, saying the animal was just a few months old and weighed between 25 and 30kg.

The panther after its capture. Photo League Protectrice des Animaux de la Nord de France/AFP

The panther was going to be transferred to a centre specialised in rehabilitating wild animals that had been domesticated.

Firefighters caught the cat last Wednesday as it roamed rooftops in Armentieres after escaping through the window of a private apartment believed to have been its home.

The panther's owner is thought to have escaped through the same window, for fear of being charged with illegally harbouring a wild animal.

Police have not located the fugitive owner, who could face charges of endangering the public, which is punishable by up to a year in prison and €15,000 in fines, Decagny said.

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