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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

France sentences sex ring members

A total of 39 men and 26 women were on trial in Angers. Sixty-two people have been found guilty of abuse and sentenced in one of France's biggest child sex trials.

Sentences ranged from four months suspended to 28 years for second-time offenders. Three people were acquitted.

Those who received the longest jail terms were key figures in the vast paedophile ring that operated in a deprived area in the town of Angers.

Sixty-five people were tried on charges of sexually abusing 45 children aged between 6 months and 12 years old.

Defence lawyer Jean-Noel Bouillaud told French radio he was happy with the sentences.

"Overall I would describe this ruling as balanced... You will remember that we feared a mass trial... When you look at the ruling as a whole, the impression is that, on the contrary, the court paid great attention to every individual case."

The defendants included 39 men and 27 women, aged 27 to 73. --
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