17 arrests amid violence in Paris over alleged police 'rape' of black man

France's president Francois Hollande stands next to the alleged victim, identified only by his first name, Theo. Picture by Arnaud Journois, Le Parisien via Associated Press.

Rioters have again set fire to cars and rubbish bins overnight in spreading violence in the suburbs of Paris over the alleged rape of a young black man with a police baton.

Police said on Wednesday morning they had made 17 arrests.

The violence in suburbs north east of Paris, which has now spread to at least five towns, erupted after a young black man was allegedly sexually assaulted with a police officer's baton last week, during an identity check.

One officer was charged on Sunday with aggravated rape and three others were charged with aggravated assault.

France's President Francois Hollande visited the alleged victim, identified only by his first name, Theo, on Tuesday afternoon at the suburban hospital where he has been treated since the alleged assault.

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