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CRIME

Thirteen firemen detained in gang rape inquiry

Thirteen firefighters have been detained after a younger recruit alleges he was raped by colleagues in a packed bus. 

A 23-year-old recruit says he was raped by his colleagues during a hazing ritual that turned brutal, news portal France Soir reports. The victim, who belongs to the prestigious Paris firefighters’ brigade, says his colleagues attacked him in front of witnesses in a packed bus. 

The recent recruit says he was called to the back of the bus where he was forced to take part in an abusive hazing ritual. In a complaint to the police, he said his abusers slapped his buttocks, pressed him to the ground before raping him with a plastic bottle.  

The alleged assault took place in a bus that was carrying thirty firefighters back from a gymnastics competition in the town of Colmar. The assault has reportedly been filmed on a mobile phone.  

In an interview with the newswire AFP, the spokesperson representing Paris firefighters  Pascal Le Testu refused to comment on the incident and says two investigations are underway. 

The young recruit has lodged a complaint for gang rape and assault.

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CRIME

Hackers post French hospital patient data online

Hackers who crippled a French hospital and stole a trove of data last month have released personal records of patients online, officials have confirmed.

Hackers post French hospital patient data online

The cyberattackers demanded a multimillion dollar ransom from the Corbeil-Essonnes hospital near Paris a month ago, but the institution refused to pay.

The hospital said the hackers had now dumped medical scans and lab analyses along with the social security numbers of patients.

“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the unspeakable disclosure of hacked data,” health minister Fran├žois Braun tweeted on Sunday.

Hospitals around the world have been facing increasing attacks from ransomware groups, particularly since the pandemic stretched resources to breaking point.

The problem has been acute in France, where officials estimated early last year that healthcare institutions were facing on average an attack every week.

President Emmanuel Macron last year called the attacks during the pandemic a “crisis within a crisis” and announced an extra one billion euros for cybersecurity.

During last month’s attack, the Corbeil-Essonnes hospital shut down its emergency services and sent many patients to other institutions.

At one point, officials said the only technology still working was the telephone.

Rather than selling the trove of data, the hacker has dumped at least some of it for download on the “dark web” — a hidden part of the internet that requires special software to access.

Analysts said it seemed to be a tactic to put pressure on the hospital, even though public institutions are banned by French law from paying ransoms.

Cybersecurity researcher Damien Bancal, who revealed the leak and has seen the files, told AFP the worry is that other criminals will now launch scams with the data that has already been divulged.

In response to the leak on the weekend, the hospital severely restricted access to its systems and told patients to be extremely vigilant when receiving emails, text messages or phone calls.

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