Burglaries soar in Paris but fall across France

Burglaries in the French capital have soared in 2018 and the weather is partly to blame, police say, while break-ins in other parts of the country fell, new figures show.

Burglaries soar in Paris but fall across France

Paris has seen a rise of 18 percent in the number of home break-ins in the first half of 2018, new figures from the country's interior ministry reveal.

Throughout the first half of 2018 there were 5,701 burglaries in the capital, according to the data published by Le Figaro newspaper.

And the rise could be even more marked in the second half of the year given that burglaries tend to shoot up during the summer months.

Paris police chief Nicolas Duquesnel said burglaries tend to rise in summer as Parisians head away on holiday and leave their homes unoccupied.

The police chief also said this year's persistent hot weather during June, July and August gave burglars a boost.

“The heatwave factor plays a part because people leave windows open so it's easier to get into homes, even when people are present, especially at night,” Duquesnel told BFM TV.

Outside Paris the rate of burglaries across France actually fell by 5.67 percent in the first half of 2018.

The departments which saw the biggest drop included Nord in the far north of France, which saw burglaries plunge by 16.33 percent.

The central department of Rhône saw a drop of 5.9 percent.

READ ALSO: How to avoid being burgled in France (and what to do if you are)

However in the department of Bouches-du-Rhône, which was ranked fourth in the table of the departments in France most targeted by burglars in 2017, there was actually a rise of 5.27 percent in the rate of break-ins.

Figures given to The Local earlier this year revealed that in 2017 Paris saw a total of 10,465 burglaries among its 1.46 million dwellings which gave it a rate of 8 burglaries per 1,000 homes.

But despite the large number of break-ins the capital didn't have the highest rate for break-ins across France.

That unfortunate title went to the south west department of Haute-Garonne where there were 13 break-ins per 1,000 homes.

In second place was the greater Paris department of Seine-Saint-Denis followed by Isère in the south east.

Beautiful sea-swept Manche, in Normandy, where the picturesque Mont Saint-Michel lies, is the department where you least need to worry about burglars. In 2017, only 570 homes were broken into out of a total of 291,252.

Then come the little-known department of Cantal in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (south central France) and Lozère in Occitanie, the second and third safest spots in France when it comes to home security.

The department of Dordogne was one of the safest in France but actually saw a huge jump in burglaries in 2017 for a number of different reasons.

For the full run down on the most and least burgled departments in France click on the link below.

READ ALSO: Where in France are you most and least likely to be burgled?

Where in France are you most (and least) likely to be burgled?


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French court convicts 8 for stealing Banksy from Paris terror attack site

A French court on Thursday convicted eight men for the theft and handling of a Banksy painting paying homage to the victims of the 2015 attack on the Bataclan concert hall in Paris.

French court convicts 8 for stealing Banksy from Paris terror attack site

Three men in their 30s who admitted to the 2019 theft were given prison sentences, one of four years and two of three, although they will be able to serve them wearing electronic tracking bracelets rather than behind bars.

Another man, a 41-year-old millionaire lottery winner and street art fan accused of being the mastermind of the heist, was given three years in jail for handling stolen goods after judges found the main allegation unproven. His sentence will also be served with a bracelet.

Elsewhere in the capital, the defence was making its final arguments in the trial of the surviving suspects in the 2015 Paris attacks themselves, with a verdict expected on June 29.

‘Acted like vultures’ 

British street artist Banksy painted his “sad girl” stencil on the metal door of the Bataclan in memory of the 90 people killed there on November 13th, 2015.

A white van with concealed number-plates was seen stopping on January 26, 2019 in an alleyway running alongside the central Paris music venue.

Many concertgoers fled via the same alley when the Bataclan became the focal point of France’s worst ever attacks since World War II, as Islamic State group jihadists killed 130 people at a string of sites across the capital.

On the morning of the theft, three masked men climbed out of the van, cut the hinges with angle grinders powered by a generator and left within 10 minutes, in what an investigating judge called a “meticulously prepared” heist.

Prosecutor Valerie Cadignan told the court earlier this month that the perpetrators had not sought to debase the memory of the attack victims, but “being aware of the priceless value of the door were looking to make a profit”.

She said the thieves “acted like vultures, like people who steal objects without any respect for what they might represent”.

During the trial, Bataclan staff said the theft sparked “deep indignation”, adding that the painted door was a “symbol of remembrance that belongs to everyone, locals, Parisians, citizens of the world”.

Investigators pieced together the door’s route across France and into Italy, where it was found in June 2020 on a farm in Sant’Omero, near the Adriatic coast.

Three men involved in transporting the door were each jailed for 10 months, while a 58-year-old Italian man who owns a hotel where it was temporarily stored received a six-month suspended sentence.