For seven months now, at least 50 horses were intentionally killed or maimed in France, which set the whole country on fire.

The latest attack took place on Sunday in the commune of Losne, in the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region. The owner of the horse called the police around 02.00 local time after seeing several lights on the meadow near his house. When they arrived at the scene, the police found the horse injured. The perpetrator had disappeared without a trace.

Police have a long list of questions about these mysterious attacks, especially as they specifically target certain parts of the horse’s body, such as the ears and genitals. A horse was found split and with its entrails pulled out of its lifeless body. What could all these atrocities mean?

The authorities have taken into account many clues: the act of an unbalanced, a revenge against the equestrian environment, Satanism, pagan rituals, etc.

“You can see signs of the professionalism of the person doing this, there is a certain level of technique behind the attacks,” said French Agriculture Minister Julien Denormandie during a visit to Saint-Eusèbe in central France. a horse recently found without ears.

“Everything is as wild as it has rarely been,” said Serge Lecomte, president of the French Equestrian Federation. “Should it be a cult? Cruelty to animals is just a precursor to cruelty to humans, “he added.

Privileged for a time, the track of the “lone wolf” moving from one place to another was removed in early September. Two hypotheses are currently taken seriously: witchcraft and satanism.

In a note, the Central Territorial Intelligence Service (SCRT) draws attention to the fact that these attacks have one thing in common, namely keeping a body part as a “trophy”, “generally an ear”.

According to historian Jacky Cordonnier, a specialist in religions and sects, these attacks may be linked to highly entrenched witchcraft practices in rural areas. For example, an animal can be slaughtered to extract the sap of power. “Cutting off an ear, eyes or recovering blood can be done as an attempt to get closer to his strength or to be taken away,” explains the French historian.

Anne Josso, in charge of the Interministerial Mission for Vigilance and the Fight against Sectarian Drift, a body involved in the investigation, does not rule out an initiation rite. “It corresponds to a test of rediscovering masculinity,” she says, based on the idea that the horse is usually seen as “a symbol of power and virility.”

However, Jacky Cordonnier draws attention to a disturbing aspect: “The map of these mutilations overlaps with that of some regions targeted in the past by desecration of graves and acts of Satanism ”.

Until the authors are found and the mystery is deciphered, people mobilize to project horses, both in the virtual environment, with defense groups and on the ground, with patrol cells around possible targets: meadows, studs, riding centers, etc.

France is not the only European country affected by such a mysterious phenomenon. Britain has been through something like this over the years 80, when at least 160 horses were mutilated in its territory. Those attacks, which ceased in 1990, have not yet been identified.