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OFFBEAT

Lucky Frenchman beats odds to bag second million-euro lottery win

A Frenchman has won a million euros twice in the last eighteen months on the same lottery, media reported Wednesday, a feat mathematicians said carried odds of around 16 trillion to one.

Lucky Frenchman beats odds to bag second million-euro lottery win
a Francaise des Jeux (FDJ) lottery ticket for the EuroMillions-My Million. Photo: AFP

Le Parisien newspaper said the unnamed player, from the eastern Haute-Savoie region, held winning tickets on both 11 November 2016 and May 18 this year through My Million.  

The lottery is linked to the Euro Millions franchise, which is offered in 12 European countries twice a week and carries enormous jackpots, sometimes worth more than 100 million euros.

French players who buy a Euro Millions ticket get automatically entered into the My Million draw which carries a lower top prize of one million euros 

($1.2 million).

Unlike Euro Millions, players cannot choose their numbers for their My Million ticket. They are randomly generated instead.

Le Parisien quoted mathematicians as saying the odds of winning My Million was around 19 million to one while the harder to win Euro Millions was 140 million to one.

The French player's luck mimics that of an Australian man who last month won a local lottery twice in the same week.

The unidentified man, in his 40s and from the suburb of Bondi, picked up Aus$1,020,487 (US$770,000) and then scooped another Aus$1,457,834 just five days later.

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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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