January 1, 1999

Seven students from Brest National Engineering School are the first to be convicted under a new French law against violent initiation rites traditionally carried out against freshers, especially in the elite grandes ecoles.

The students, aged between 22 and 24, received suspended prison sentences of 15 or eight days and fines of 150 euros (Pounds 105) for ragging. Bizutage was made an offence in legislation against school violence and bullying that came into force in the summer.

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