Sex, blackmail and videotapes: extraordinary saga of a French mayor's plot against his own deputy

France — Investigation

Prosecutors have begun a criminal investigation after Mediapart revealed claims that the mayor of Saint-Étienne in south-east France, Gaël Perdriau, blackmailed his deputy mayor Gilles Artigues using a videotape of the latter with a male escort in an hotel room. The apparent aim of the blackmail was to ensure that Perdriau, who is from the right-wing Les Républicains (LR), maintained political control over his deputy Gilles Artigues, a devout Catholic and former Member of Parliament from the centre-right UDI party. After the initial revelations Mediapart then published extracts from recordings which revealed both Gaël Perdriau and his chief of staff threatening the deputy mayor over the sex tape. Both men, along with three others, have now been questioned in custody by detectives. Antton Rouget reports on an affair that has provoked widespread condemnation across the political spectrum.

Probe opened into video of Paris protestor beaten by police officer

France — Link

Prosecutors have opened a preliminary investigation after videos filmed during a 'Yellow Vest' anti-government protest in the French capital on January 18th showed a man with a bloodied head being held down on his back by a helmeted officer, who then strikes him hard in the face.

French activists film live cows with stomachs holed for experiments

France — Link

French animal defence group L214 have released a video showing a centre in northern France where cows are kept with large holes bored into their rumen, the animals' first stomach, in experiments to study their digestion and which involve staff poking their arms into the innards of the cattle.

Ex-Renault-Nissan boss releases defiant video

International — Link

Lawyers acting for Carlos Ghosn, the former Renault-Nissan boss arrested over allegations of financial misconduct five months ago after landing in Tokyo in his private jet, and who was re-arrested last week on further suspicion of financial corruption, have released a video in which the former high-flying executive, 65, denies the accusations against him and denounces a 'very dirty game' of corporate intrigue.  

French government raises stakes on school security after pupil points 'gun' at teacher


A recent video showing a pupil pointing a pistol – later discovered to be fake - at his teacher in a school in France went viral. The government called an urgent meeting of senior ministers to work out a plan of action to tackle violence in France's schools, amid talk that the police might be asked to patrol in some establishments. Detailed policies are expected to be announced soon. But as Manuel Jardinaud and Faïza Zerouala report, this tough rhetoric, which recalls the days of Nicolas Sarkozy's presidency, has not gone down well with many teachers.

French police investigate apparent rape published on social media

France — Link

Police in France have opened an investigation after video images were published on Snapchat and Twitter apparently showing a young woman being raped near a nightclub in the south-west city of Toulouse, and which were blocked after the authorities were alerted by users of the social media.

French priest suspended after video shows him slapping baby

France — Link

Footage shows 89-year-old priest ordering the infant he is holding at a baptism to 'be quiet' before sharply slapping his cheek.

Macron reveals hand in off-the-cuff comments on welfare spending

France — Link

A brief video circulating on social media shows French President Emmanuel Macron talking about welfare spending to his aides within the Elysée Palace, telling them that 'we put too much dosh' into benefits and yet those 'born poor stay poor', arguing that people must be 'made responsible', and that healthcare policy should be more active in preventing the causes of the need for treatment.

Video released of French police fatally shooting man fleeing arrest

France — Link

An amateur video recording has emerged of police officers shooting at a car driven by an allegedly armed man, who was later found dead, after he refused a summons to step out of his vehicle on a housing estate near the town of Montargis, south of Paris, and who sped off after ramming a police vehicle.

'Human sacrifice ceremony' filmed at European nuclear reseach centre

International — Link

The prank video shows cloaked individuals stabbing a kneeling woman on the Cern premises, home to the Large Hadron Collider on the Franco-Swiss border.

French TV channel criticised for showing video of Paris suicide bomber

France — Link

The channel M6 broadcast footage of the moment Ibrahim Abdeslam blew himself up at the Comptoir Voltaire café in Paris on November 13th.

French TV channel pulls 'sexist' ad boasting its presenters are mostly female

France — Link

Public channel France 3 was slammed over video of home chaos and abandoned domestic chores because women became presenters. 

Video footage of train attack scenes released

International — Link

The images, filmed by one of three US men who overpowered the gunman, shows him trussed inside the carriage and his bundle of weapons.

Ex-UK policeman in Paris racism case tells London court he was aggressed

International — Link

Chelsea supporter Richard Barklie was travelling to an away match when filmed preventing a black man from mounting a Métro train.

France 'paid Mohamed Merah's father for compromising video clips'

International — Link

Father of a victim of the Toulouse gunman, who shot dead seven people in 2012, says the videos show him confessing work for spy services.