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The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Canadian Paralympic swimmer Benoit Huot seeks return of stolen medals

MONTREAL - Paralympic swimmer Benoit Huot says several of his medals were stolen from his Montreal-area home Saturday night.

Huot's father discovered Sunday morning that there had been a break-in at his recently purchased home and several items had gone missing overnight, including at least one of his 19 Paralympic medals, three from Commonwealth Games and three from Parapan American Games.

Huot said a TV and home furnishings were also taken.

"The other stuff, they're replaceable, but not the medals," Huot said. "It has no (monetary) value attached to it pretty much. It's all sentimental and emotional and that's it. These are things I want to give to my kids."

Huot has been training with the national team in Richmond, B.C., in preparation for the Pan Pacific Para-swimming Championships. He had moved many of his belongings to a locked garage at his new home, which is undergoing renovations.

"It is disgraceful and shameful that a person would steal mementoes such as these," said Swimming Canada CEO Ahmed El-Awadi. "Swimming Canada is calling on that person to return the medals, and we ask them to contact the Longueuil police as soon as possible to make arrangements.

"Benoit worked so hard to earn these medals as a representative of Canada. The most important part is that they are returned to him."

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