Notorious French gangster Redoine Faid, who was sentenced to 25 years in jail, escaped his prison in the Paris region on Sunday by a helicopter. The French police is on a massive manhunt for the gangster who fled with the assistance of three men who were heavily armed with assault rifles. The gunmen used smoke bombs and angle-grinders to break into the facility’s visiting room where Faid was talking to his brother.
As per the reports by AP, the helicopter carrying the gunmen landed at a courtyard, freed him from the visiting room and took off.
France’s Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet, who visited the prison in the evening, told BBC, “It was an extremely well-prepared commando unit that may have used drones to survey the area beforehand.”
The courtyard where the helicopter landed was the only area not protected by anti-aircraft netting.
“Inmates do not use it except to leave the prison,” Prison Union representative Martial Delabroye said.
The helicopter was reportedly found in a northeastern suburb of Paris later, about 60 kilometers from the prison. And post the ‘spectacular escape’, Faid de-boarded the helicopter and got into a car, which was later found burned out at a shopping center car park in a Paris suburb.
This isn’t the first time that Faid has planned a daring escape. Earlier, in 2013, he escaped using dynamites hidden in tissue packs and was recaptured six weeks later on the outskirts of Paris.