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RAPE

French dad raped daughters and fathered baby

A man was sentenced to five years in prison for the rape of his two daughters, with one of whom he had a child, in a court in Amiens last Friday.

The mother of the two daughters, who since has estranged herself from the rest of the family, was also sentenced to four years in prison for not informing police at the time.

Now aged 29 and 31, the two daughters have always supported their father and say all sexual relations were consensual.

One of the daughters still lives with her father, and they have a child together.

According to the mother’s lawyer, Florence Danne-Thiefine, the girls “fully admit today to their consent and love for their father.”

According to the lawyer defending the father, Hubert Delarue, the sexual relations started when the girls were teenagers, when they were over 15.

The girls originally filed just a civil case against their father so they “would be able to help with the case, so that no one prevented them from telling the truth,” according to Danne-Thiefine.

But one of the girls’ honest testimonies about her father triggered and inquest.

The mother and father, who have three other children, also lost the parental rights to one of their children, who is a minor.

Due to the time the mother and father spent in prison during investigations leading up to the case, they have technically already served the terms given.

But both will be on parole for 10 years and will face a further seven year sentence if the terms of the parole are broken.

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FOOTBALL

Row over French stadium accident that left 29 hurt

The owner of French top-flight club Lille hit back at his rival at Amiens SC on Sunday, suggesting safety lapses were to blame for the collapse of a stadium barrier which left 29 fans injured during a game between the teams.

Row over French stadium accident that left 29 hurt
Photo: Francois Lo Presti/AFP

The chairman of Amiens, Bernard Joannin, initially blamed hundreds of “hardcore fans” among Lille supporters for the shocking scenes during Saturday's Ligue 1 encounter in Amiens in northeast France.

“They surged forward, chaotically, more than 500 people, against this barrier, which was in perfect condition,” Joannin said after the accident which led the game to be abandoned.

Most of the victims were discharged from hospital on Sunday morning except six people who sustained serious injuries when the pitch-side barrier gave way, sending dozens of people tumbling on top of each other.

The Lille supporters – no more than a few hundred – pressed against the barrier early in the first-half as fans moved forward to celebrate their team's opening goal against newly promoted Amiens.

Gerard Lopez, the chairman and owner of Lille, told AFP he was “shocked” by Joannin appearing to blame hooligans for the accident.

“What's serious is that supporters are celebrating a goal and at the end there are injured people. It's very serious to talk about aggressiveness,” he said in a an interview on Sunday.

He also raised worries allegedly mentioned by supporters from Strasbourg, Marseille and Nice who had claimed the stadium was “not very solid”.

“I've seen photos of the stadium, the supports for the barriers,” he added.

Joannin said on Sunday he regretted his initial reaction.

Stop the arguments

Referee Thomas Leonard suspended the match in the 16th minute as Red Cross and emergency workers rushed to help the injured, while prosecutors have since opened an investigation.

“It happened all of a sudden. I don't even know who scored. It just suddenly fell on me. I couldn't hear anything, I couldn't see anything and then the emergency workers took me away,” said Georges Penel, a 21-year-old Lille fan who suffered injuries to his leg and back.

Built in 1999, the Stade de la Licorne (“Stadium of the Unicorn”) is the smallest of the 20 French Ligue 1 clubs, with a capacity of only 12,000.

Renovation work is taking place throughout the 2017-18 season, but chairman Joannin ruled out any link between improvements to the stadium and Saturday's accident.

“We shouldn't mix up work being done on the roof and the rest of the stadium, which has been checked and approved by all of the security commissions,” he told a press conference on Sunday morning.

In May, local politician Alain Gest had suggested that upkeep of the stadium had been neglected by previous local administrations but was now “perfectly in line with regulations” and “up to standards for playing in Ligue 1”.

The mayor of Lille, leading Socialist party figure Martine Aubry called for calm on Twitter, saying: “Let's stop the arguments. Think about the victims first and let's wait for the enquiry results.”