Riviera and French News Wednesday 29th March 2017


Update 10:00

Prison Sentence - A 55 year old farmer arrested in Sospel in late January, allegedly allowed more than 100 people to enter French territory in exchange for money. After nearly five months of investigation the Nice Criminal Court has given a three year prison sentence to the accused.

“Riviera” - The series “Riviera” produced by Sky has injected 21 million euros of direct benefit to the local economy according to reports. After 140 days of filming since last summer, the shooting of Riviera's first season ended a few weeks ago. The 10 episodes of this big budget series, directed by Neil Jordan were exclusively shot on the Côte d'Azur, between Menton, Cannes and Nice.


Strike Action – Refuse collection bins are reportedly overflowing in some areas of Marseille as workers continue strike action. On the 8th day of strike action in the city all night time collections have been halted. The local council has asked for the strike action to be called off ahead of negotiations with the unions.

Robbery - Police are searching for a man thought to be in his early thirties who broke into the jewellery store located at the entrance of the Geant Casino in Villeneuve Loubet. The incident occurred shortly after 8pm on Monday. The armed individual reportedly threatened staff at the store before getting away with jewellery on display in the shop window.

Speeding - A motorist has been stopped by the police on the coast road in Antibes driving at 126 km/h in an area limited to 50 km/h. Police reported that up to 70 motorists were stopped on Monday evening for speeding offences.

Customs - Customs officers in the Alpes Maritimes have reported that the number of counterfeit articles seized in 2016 is six times higher than in 2015. The counterfeits concern essentially imitations of perfumes, leather goods and fashion. The traffic of cigarettes has also increased in the last year with 2.2 tonnes of contraband tobacco being seized with an estimated street value of 610,000 euros.

Cannes Film Festival - A brocante selling collectable objects from the world of cinema will take place on the Croisette in Cannes during this year’s Cannes Film Festival, which takes place from the 17th to the 28th May. The city of Cannes is organising  several events open to the public during the festival and offers up to 65.000 places in a draw. All you have to do is register at  


Fillon Scandal - The British-born wife of French presidential candidate Francois Fillon has been formally put under investigation in the fake jobs scandal that has poisoned her husband’s political career. Penelope Fillon is being prosecuted for embezzlement, misappropriation of public funds and aggravated fraud. The announcement that she had been mise en examen – came after several hours of questioning by the French financial prosecutor.

Protest - Violent clashes have broken out in Paris between riot police and protesters angry at the police killing of a Chinese man in his own home. Three police officers were injured and 35 demonstrators arrested on Tuesday. Shaoyo Liu, was allegedly shot in front of his children while he was cutting up fish. Police say the officer involved in a raid on the property on Sunday fired in self-defence after Liu wounded an officer with a “bladed weapon”.

Carlos the Jackal - Self-styled "professional revolutionary" Carlos the Jackal has been sentenced to a third life sentence by a French court after being judged responsible for the 1974 Paris Drugstore attack, which killed two people and injured 34.


The British Prime Minister Theresa May has signed the letter that will formally start the UK’s departure from the European Union. The letter will be delivered to the president of the European Council Donald Tusk later today and gives official notice of Britain’s intention to quit under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty. Mrs May will make a statement to Parliament at lunchtime and will say that the letter marks”the moment for the country to come together”. Talks on the divorce are not expected to start until May and are likely to be interrupted by elections in France and Germany. A vote on the deal is expected to take place in the Houses of Parliament,the European Council and the European Parliament sometime between October 2018 and March of 2019.

Ford is to spend 1.2 billion dollars as part of an upgrade to its 3 Michigan plants. The US car maker says that 850 million dollars will be spent on retooling its factory at Wayne where it plans to build its Ranger and Bronco models. In addition,the firm will create 130 new jobs at its Romeo engine parts plant. In January,Ford said that it would cancel a planned 1.6 billion dollar plant in Mexico after coming under pressure from US President Donald Trump. Last week,the company said that it expected higher investments as well as other spending to drag on 2017 earnings.

And-The chief executive of Tesla,Elon Musk has launched a start-up which aims to develop technology that connects our brains to computers. Neuralink is in its very early stages and is registered as a ‘medical research’firm. The new company is to develop ‘neural lace’ technology which would implant tiny electrodes into the brain. The technique could be used to improve memory or give humans added artificial intelligence. Specialists in the field believe that, eventually we may be able to upload and download our thoughts.


Football-New video technology has already caused controversy as Spain beat France 2-0 in last night’s friendly international in Paris. First,France had an Antoine Griezmann goal ruled out by a video assistant referee for offside and then Spain’s second goal scored by Gerard Deulofeu was awarded by the video official after an assistant referee wrongly flagged for offside. The Fifa president Gianni Infantino wants the system to be used at the World Cup in Russia next year. In last night’s other friendly games the Republic of Ireland were beaten 1-0 at home to Iceland and the Netherland’s poor run continued as they were beaten 2-1 at home by Italy.

Formula 1-Lewis Hamilton has decided not to use a personal trainer this season. The triple world champion says that he’s chosen to take control of his fitness programme this season as a “kind of challenge”. Usually,Formula 1 drivers employ personal trainers to keep them in peak physical fitness but Hamilton has upped his training programme to meet the greater demands of this year’s faster cars and says that his discipline and motivation have definitely gone up.

Cricket-The third Test between New Zealand and South Africa in Hamilton has ended in a draw after heavy rain affected the final day’s play. South Africa were on  80-5 and under some pressure in their second innings when the umpires decided to call the match off but they win the series 1-0.

Rugby Union-Sam Warburton says that he’s flattered to be named as one of the favourites to captain the Lions on their tour to New Zealand but he’s concentrating on just making the squad at the moment. The Wales flanker led the Lions to tour victory in Australia in 2013 but he’s since been replaced as Wales captain by Alun Wyn Jones . The Lions coach Warren Gatland has said that this weekend’s round of European Cup games will give players the chance to impress before he announces his squad on April the 19th.


Clear skies with light variable winds. Top temperature 20 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 12 degrees on the coast and 8 degrees inland with clear skies. Thursday and Friday-Fine and sunny with a highs of 20-21 degrees.


A retired cabinet maker in central France has handbuilt a wooden 2CV Citroen Car... which is about to pass its first technical inspection.  The car, built as an exact one to one replica to the famed Citroen 2CV, was put together over six years by retiree Michel Robillard.

It was made in a Touraine fruitwood and is considered to be unique in the world. And it's fully equipped to take the road. Robillard has said he hopes the vehicle will one day go on display in an art gallery. 







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