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Fund for French boxer who punched officers raises money, ire

Published
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests walk on the highway in Lyon, central France, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Protesters were looking to breathe new life into the yellow vest movement as numbers of participants fell since the first Saturday protest in mid-November. They reiterated their call for Macron, denounced as the president of the rich, to resign (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)

PARIS (AP) — French government ministers have criticized a public fundraising drive for a former boxing champion who was seen on video appearing to punch police officers during the most recent yellow vest protests in Paris.

Online platform Leetchi said Tuesday that donors pledged over 100,000 euros ($115,000) to support Christophe Dettinger and the money would be used to pay legal fees.

Leetchi later closed the fund after prominent ministers in French President Emmanuel Macron's government expressed outrage.

Equality Minister Marlene Schiappa told France Info radio the fundraiser was "illegal" because "it backs a criminal act, that is to say, gratuitous violence."

The 37-year-old Dettinger was taken into custody on Monday.

A parallel fund was launched to support injured police officers.

Riot police officers take position at the Champs Elysees avenue during a yellow vest protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Arc de Triumph in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests stands next to a burning bicycle at the Champs Elysees avenue during a protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Yellow vest reads, peace. Arc de Thriomphe in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests walk on the highway in Lyon, central France, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Protesters were looking to breathe new life into the yellow vest movement as numbers of participants fell since the first Saturday protest in mid-November. They reiterated their call for Macron, denounced as the president of the rich, to resign (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests walk on the highway in Lyon, central France, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Protesters were looking to breathe new life into the yellow vest movement as numbers of participants fell since the first Saturday protest in mid-November. They reiterated their call for Macron, denounced as the president of the rich, to resign (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)
Riot police officers take position at the Champs Elysees avenue during a yellow vest protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Arc de Triumph in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)
Riot police officers take position at the Champs Elysees avenue during a yellow vest protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Arc de Triumph in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests stands next to a burning bicycle at the Champs Elysees avenue during a protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Yellow vest reads, peace. Arc de Thriomphe in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)
Demonstrators wearing yellow vests stands next to a burning bicycle at the Champs Elysees avenue during a protest in Paris, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Hundreds of protesters were trying to breathe new life into France's apparently waning yellow vest movement with marches in Paris and gatherings in other cities. Notre Dame cathedral in the background. Yellow vest reads, peace. Arc de Thriomphe in the background. (AP Photo//Michel Euler)