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CRIME

Young women ‘strangled and robbed’ old people

Two women have been arrested for robbing the elderly after breaking into their homes in the Paris region and strangling them until they lost consciousness.

The two women, aged 22 and 25, were arrested in Barcelona earlier in the week, where they were wanted for similar crimes, and are soon to be extradited back to France.

Over the summer, the duo racked up 15 victims, who were mainly women aged between 71 and 91, in Paris and the Ile de France region.

They would follow victims to their houses and force their way in, before strangling them until they lost consciousness and stealing their valuables.

Two men, aged 35 and 37, were arrested in St Ouen, North West Paris, for acting as getaway drivers for the women.

Security camera footage caught the women dressed as nurses following their victims, sometimes shouting the word 'revenge' after they had committed the crimes.

“Their strategy was well-practiced and they would complete the crime in a few seconds,” said a source close to the case.

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POLICE

France vows to tackle motorbike ‘rodeos’ after children injured

The French government has pledged a new crackdown against illicit motorbike cruising by youths in suburbs across the country, after two children were seriously injured by a rider near Paris.

France vows to tackle motorbike 'rodeos' after children injured

The rowdy late-night races and stunts known as “rodeos” have become increasingly popular in particular in low-income neighbourhoods, leading to complaints about traffic and noise from local officials and many residents.

On Friday evening, a 10-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy were hit by a rider while playing tag outside their home in Pontoise, northwest of the capital.

French daily Le Figaro reported on Monday that the girl suffered a blow to the head and remained in serious condition in hospital, while the boy had a broken leg.

The accident came after a 19-year-old man was killed in June after being hit by a bike rider in the western city of Rennes.

“I have asked the police to step up their interventions this month,” Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said in the southern city of Marseille.

Nonetheless the rodeos are often tolerated or defended as a gritty urban subculture that provides an outlet for disaffected youths, with an upcoming film, “Rodeo”, that appears to glorify the gatherings and  generated a strong buzz at the Cannes film festival last May.

Police have carried out 8,000 operations to break up rodeos in the past two months, leading to 1,200 arrests and the seizure of around 700 motorbikes and other vehicles including all-terrain “quads”.

In 2018, parliament passed a law increasing penalties for the riders to up to five years in prison.

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