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Corsica gunman found dead after killing one in dog dispute

A gunman who killed one person and wounded five others following a dispute over a dog on the French island of Corsica Wednesday committed suicide after holing up in the building where he lived, officials said.

Corsica gunman found dead after killing one in dog dispute
Photos: AFP
French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said an elite police unit had “intervened” and the body of the shooter had been found after the incident in the Corsican capital Bastia.
   
“He committed suicide,” the minister told the National Assembly in Paris.
   
Authorities ruled out terrorism and said a dispute with neighbours over a dog appeared to be the cause.
   
One police officer was among those injured as the assailant, who had a criminal record, opened fire in the building and on the street mid-afternoon.
   
The policeman was in intensive care but “his life is not in danger”, Castaner said.
 
Photo: AFP
 
“In total six people were shot, one of whom has died,” said local prosecutor Caroline Tharot.
   
The dead man was described as a local public housing official on the French Mediterranean island.
   
The shooter, Joseph Orsoni, in his sixties, was no stranger to Corsica's courts, having two previous convictions for armed offences, the prosecutor said.
   
The cause of the rampage seemed to stem from a long-running dispute over Orsoni's dog which had bitten his neighbour's partner, Tharot said.
   
Orsoni first attacked this 23-year-old male neighbour outside the building with a cutter and then “he went to fetch two double-barrelled shotguns with which he shot several people”, she said.
   
He began shooting in the street around 4:25 pm, “before retreating into the building where he lives”, a prefecture spokesman told AFP.
 
The area was sealed off by police, while several residents remained in the building.
   
“When I arrived at the car park, I heard gunshots,” Pierre Masternak, a public housing office employee, told France Bleu RCFM radio.
   
“I didn't know where they were coming from, I saw traces of blood on the ground. I called my colleague, the caretaker… He joined me, we looked to see where the traces of blood led and that's when a man burst out behind us, aimed a shotgun at us and fired at us.”
   
“He got my colleague, who was hit in the leg. We both managed to leave the building and take refuge, my colleague behind a car, and the man continued to shoot at us,” he added.
   
An elite police unit was deployed from Marseille to reinforce local officers during the operation.

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CRIME

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.

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