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Frenchman fined for leaving home during lockdown to 'beat someone up'

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By Euronews with AFP
The man was fined €135 by police in northern France.
The man was fined €135 by police in northern France.   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Thibault Camus - FILE
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A man in Brittany has been fined by police after breaking the country's coronavirus lockdown restrictions to "smash a guy's face in".

The individual from Lannion (Côtes d'Armor) was fined €135 after police inspected his written explanation for being outside.

The 39-year-old man was hiding behind a car near the Lannion train station on Saturday around 01:00 when he was spotted by a police patrol.

Residents in France must justify any trip outside of the lockdown by filling in a print or online declaration form.

Leaving home during the COVID-19 pandemic is only allowed for essential reasons, as defined on the attestation form.

"He said he was waiting for someone to beat them up," Divisional Commander Daniel Kerdraon told AFP, adding that the man was equipped with a flick knife.

"He had his handwritten certificate with his real name and the time he left home at 22:15, but he was told that his reason for going out was not valid."

"In his own way, he was trying to fulfill the letter of the law," he added.

The man, who had been drinking, was detained overnight and released on Saturday morning with a mandatory €135 fine for breaking the lockdown rules, and another €150 fine for public drunkenness.

"He left with a good model of attestation and was told that 'fighting' is not a valid reason," added the police commander.

The man is due to be questioned again at the Lannion police station on Monday for carrying a weapon.