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Mystery deepens over French Riviera bones after new DNA tests

Grasse courthouse
Grasse courthouse Google Street View

The mystery over a pile of human bones found off the French Riviera deepened on Monday with the results of a new DNA test.


It all began last February, when an amateur diver came across a skull and other bones, while searching for sea urchins off the Cap d'Antibes.

French police opened a murder inquiry and the bones apparently belong to at least four people, two men and two women.

Among the bones is the skull of a 50 year old male with the words "death to paedophiles" written in indelible ink and a drawing of a target sign.

In November, DNA testing indicated that the remains of 17 year-old Stephane Hirson were among the bones.

Hirson was a psychologically disturbed teenager who disappeared from his home near Paris in 1994.

But on Monday, the prosecutor's office in Grasse, which is leading the investigation, said a new DNA test had disproved that.

"There are a thousand questions in this case" said prosecutor Georges Gutierrez, "why did we only find one single bone per person?"

One femur, two humeruses, and one skull, each belonging to a different person, are the only evidence in the deepening mystery.


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