A man in Sicily in Italy asked a friend to shoot him in the groin in the hope of making his ex-girlfriend feel sorry for him, police said.

Police in the central Sicilian city of Piazza Armerina said they became suspicious when the 27-year-old went to hospital with wounds from a hunting rifle's pellets in the groin area.

At first he said the wounds had been caused in a hunting accident, but later admitted he had asked a 16-year-old friend to shoot him in an attempt to win back the affection of his girlfriend, who had apparently left him because of his violent character.

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