France-Britain drone project papers stolen in Paris rail station

Why do officials find it so hard to hang on to their stuff?

The latest butter fingers belong to an engineer with French company Dassault Aviation, who had his briefcase stolen from a train station in Paris. 

Inside, according to Le Parisien, were documents relating to a joint drone-building project between Britain and France. 

The paper reported that the case was nabbed on Feb. 2, while its owner was buying a Eurostar ticket at the Gare du Nord. He apparently left the case to go to the assistance of a colleague who was being harrassed by an unknown man, who is suspected of being an accomplice to the thief.

According to the BBC, France and Britain's plan to develop a new generation of fighter drones is their biggest collaboration since they agreed to closer military cooperation earlier this month.

Dassault has since confirmed that a briefcase belonging to an employee was taken, but insisted that it did not contain any "sensitive documents."

"It was basically a petty theft, like so many others at the station," a company spokesman told Agence France Presse

He added that the incident was captured by security cameras, so "the police shouldn't have any trouble finding the thieves."

All in all, the mishap is more excusable than the loss of classified British intelligence documents on a train, where they were left by a civil servant; or a British cabinet minister's decision to dispose of papers relating to national security in a park garbage can

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