Disappearance of Ophélie Bretnacher

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Ophélie Bretnacher

The disappearance of Ophélie Bretnacher, a French student, was a complex criminal, and diplomatic affair between France and Hungary.

Ophélie Bretnacher, disappeared in Budapest, Hungary on December 4, 2008. She was part of the European exchange program known as the Erasmus Programme[1] City security cameras tracked part of her route after leaving a night club. Her bag and cell phone were later found on the Széchenyi Chain Bridge (Széchenyi Lanchid).

Her friends and family used several methods to attempt to find her,[2][3] an official investigation was opened in Hungary and was soon followed by one in France.

Semi marathon et 10 km de Reims 2009.jpg

Political and diplomatic consequences[edit]

An online affidavit has been signed by over 10,000 people and was sent to the French President.[4]

On January 11, 2009, several hundred people marched silently in a white march, from the Champ de Mars, near the Eiffel Tower, to seek involvement of the French State.[5]

In the French Government, Catherine Vautrin, the Vice-Président of the National Assembly asked for a French intervention[6][7][8] Following this intervention, French investigators were sent for the second time to Hungary.[9] Ophélie appears on Nicolas Sarkozy's blog.[10]

The criminal case[edit]

Her body was discovered in Csepel, in February 2009, in a backwater of the Danube. She probably drowned. The police said that death was probably the result of a suicide or accident.[11] However, homicide cannot be ruled out[12] because of the finding of an hematoma on Ophelie's body as well as many gray areas during the search.[13]

In February 2010, her family filed a new claim for murder.[14][15][16][17]

In March 2010, a judicial inquiry was opened in Paris for kidnapping, sequestration, followed by murder.[18]


One year later her friends were successful in raising 60,000 people using social media.

Improbabilities that persist in 2014[edit]

Two years after her disappearance, on December 4, 2010, Maitre William Bourdon said that the investigation continues. The article also notes:

  • Some evidences (such as the walker who heard screams of women at the time of the disappearance was close to where her bag was found) have not been investigated further.
  • The body of Ophélie was located in a place against the current, and it is not possible that came from the Chain Bridge.[19]


This affair is classed in Hungary in 2014. [20]


  1. ^ (English) "Budapest police investigate the case of a missing French girl". Retrieved December 12, 2009. ,
  2. ^ "Ophélie Bretnacher missing". Hír Televízió. December 2008. Retrieved January 13, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Le web mobilisé pour retrouver Ophélie Bretnacher". L'Express. December 11, 2008. Retrieved October 6, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Pétition pour une implication de l'Etat français.". 
  5. ^ "Ils refusent qu'on oublie Ophélie". Le Parisien. January 12, 2009. Retrieved December 16, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Catherine Vautrin Questions au gouvernement 13 janvier 2009". 
  7. ^ "Vidéo de l'intervention de Catherine Vautrin à l'Assemblée nationale". 
  8. ^ "Disparition d'Ophélie Bretnacher le 13-15 le mag,". 
  9. ^ (English) "Hungarian authorities investigate possible kidnap". The Budapest Times. 24 January 2009. Retrieved January 13, 2010. 
  10. ^ [1] Nicolas Sarkosy ' blog
  11. ^ (English) "Ophélie Bretnacher mystery nears end as body recovered". Retrieved January 13, 2010. , Caboodle.hu february 13th, 2009
  12. ^ "EXCLUSIF Ophélie Bretnacher l'homicide ne doit pas être écarté". , L’Est Républicain 4 th december 2009
  13. ^ "Disparition d'Ophélie Bretnacher — Mort probable d'Ophélie : un hématome qui interpelle". , L’Union february 14 th 2009
  14. ^ [2] "Justice, ces familles qui s'impliquent", Jean-Pierre Thiollet, France-Soir, february 18 th 2010
  15. ^ [3] Meuse:Ophélie, nouvelle plainte des parents, l'Est Républicain, 3 February 2010
  16. ^ [4] Ophélie Bretnacher, plainte pour meurtre, le Figaro 2 February 2010
  17. ^ [5] Elle, La famille relance l'enquête 2 February 2010
  18. ^ / 2010-03-17/fait-divers-mort-d-ophelie-bretnacher-en-hongrie-une-information-judiciaire/920/0/434593 Mort d'Ophélie Bretnacher en Hongrie, une information judiciaire, le Point March 17, 2010
  19. ^ [6] Maitre William Bourdon : l'enquête avance, L’Union du 4 décembre 2010
  20. ^ [7]

External links[edit]

See also[edit]