World Briefs: 2 steal $759k worth of luxury watches in Paris

2 steal $759k worth of luxury watches in Paris

PARIS • Two men made off with half a million euros worth of luxury watches after threatening staff at the central Paris offices of Swiss watchmaker Girard-Perregaux with tear gas, the police said.

"Two men pretended to be couriers to get the door opened," a police source said. After threatening staff there with tear gas canisters, they escaped "with about 10 watches with an estimated value of €500,000 (S$759,000)", added the source.


Amnesty for illegal arms in Australia

SYDNEY • Australia has announced a gun amnesty for next year after a criminal intelligence report estimated there were 260,000 illegal firearms in the country.

Australia introduced tight curbs on gun ownership after a massacre of 35 in 1996.

"The amnesty will provide an opportunity for those individuals who, for whatever reason, are in possession of an unregistered firearm to hand it in without fear of being prosecuted," Justice Minister Michael Keenan told reporters in Melbourne yesterday.


'Fake sheikh' reporter jailed for 15 months

LONDON • British journalist Mazher Mahmood, better known as the "Fake Sheikh" who caught out celebrities in tabloid stings, has been jailed for 15 months for perverting the course of justice.

Mahmood, 53, who posed as a wealthy figure from the Gulf and encouraged stars to make embarrassing revelations, and his driver Alan Smith, 66, were convicted last week of conspiring to pervert the course of justice following a trial in London.

A jury found the two men had plotted to suppress evidence in the collapsed 2014 drugs trial of British pop singer Tulisa Contostavlos.


4 dead after attack on migrant dinghy

ROME • Armed men attacked an overcrowded dinghy carrying migrants off Libya, leaving at least four dead and up to 25 missing, the German non-governmental organisation Sea-Watch said.

The group said the Italian coast guard had sent a rescue ship and diverted an oil tanker to help a dinghy in distress in international waters, 14 nautical miles off Libya, early yesterday. As the operation was unfolding, assailants aboard a vessel with Libyan coast guard insignia arrived and tried to steal the dinghy's motor, a Sea-Watch spokesman said.

The men beat some of the migrants with clubs, causing panic, which caused most of them to fall into the sea, the spokesman added. Sea-Watch said it rescued about 120 out of the estimated 150 people on board.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 22, 2016, with the headline 'World Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe