November 23, 2020

Frenchman fined for breaking lockdown to go ‘beat someone up’

Frenchman fined for breaking lockdown to go ‘beat someone up’

French police officers control passersby in the French riviera city of Nice, on November 4, 2020, as France is on a second lockdown aimed at containing the spread of covid-19 pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus. (Photo by Valery HACHE / AFP)

Illustration. PHOTO: AFP

A man in the Brittany region of northwest France has been fined by police and faces further legal proceedings after breaking the country’s coronavirus lockdown with the written explanation that he was going out to “smash a guy’s face in.”

All people in France who go outdoors for any reason during its current lockdown to combat the coronavirus pandemic must print or download a form to fill in declaring their reason for leaving home.

Police in the town of Lannion said that in the early hours of Saturday the man, 39, was found lurking behind a car by a police patrol and asked what he was doing.

“He explained that he was waiting for someone to ‘smash their face in’ and was carrying a flick knife, local police commander Daniel Kerdraon told AFP.

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“He had the written form with his real name and the time he had left home — 10:15 pm. But we told him that the reason for going out was not valid.”

“In his own way, he was trying to fulfil the letter of the law,” he added.

The man, who had been drinking, was detained overnight and released Saturday morning with a mandatory 135-euro ($160) fine for breaking the lockdown rules, and another 150-euro fine for drunken behaviour.

“We showed him how to fill the form properly and made clear that going out to ‘beat someone up’ is not a valid reason,” Kerdraon said.

The man will be questioned again Monday for carrying a weapon.


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