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'Hell's Angel' motorbikes get papal blessing

If there is anything guaranteed to dispel the last traces of Harley-Davidson's one-time bad-boy image, it is a blessing from the Pope.

Pope Francis performed a "Blessing of the Motorbikes" for hundreds of Harley-Davidson owners who gathered at St Peter's Square to celebrate the 110th anniversary of the brand.

He blessed 1,400 bikes, which were once the favoured ride of the Hell's Angels. The Pontiff was presented with two gleaming models and a black leather biker jacket by Mark-Hans Richer, Harley-Davidson's senior vice-president, but he refrained from trying out the gifts.

Earlier, the Pope denounced the "deplorable" phenomenon of child labour in front of a 60,000-strong crowd gathered for his weekly address. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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