X

Notorious French Inmate Makes Brazen Helicopter Prison Break

Redoine Faid was freed by armed men in balaclavas
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 1, 2018 4:30 PM CDT
In this photo dated Nov. 22, 2010, notorious French criminal Redoine Faid poses prior to an interview with a French TV channel   (IBO/Sipa via AP)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – A notorious French criminal serving 25 years for murder made an audacious escape from prison Sunday after several heavily armed men landed a helicopter in a courtyard, freed him from a visiting room and carried him away. Per AP, it was the second daring escape by Redoine Faid, who once blasted his way out of a different prison with explosives hidden in tissue packs. His latest escape, from Reau Prison, took only "a few minutes," France's Justice Ministry said. Unarmed guards said they could do nothing to prevent it. Two men wearing balaclavas and police armbands got off the chopper and entered the prison to look for Faid. They used a grinding machine to open the door to the visiting room, officials said. The men set off smoke canisters to hide from video cameras, and the helicopter touched down in the only part of the complex that was not covered by anti-helicopter netting.

When the chopper arrived, Faid was meeting with his brother in the visiting room. A third man was holding the pilot at gunpoint, union members said. French media reported that the three men took the pilot hostage at a flying club in the Paris region. He was later released with no physical injuries. The helicopter was found burned in the town of Garges-les-Gonesse, in the northern suburbs of Paris. Faid was believed to have left by car along with his accomplices. French prosecutors opened an investigation into the escape. Investigators were questioning Faid's brother on Sunday afternoon. The 46-year-old Faid was serving time for the 2010 death of a young police officer killed during a botched robbery. Faid was freed in 2009 after serving 10 years. At the time, he swore that he had turned his life around, writing a confessional book about his life of crime and going on an extensive media tour in 2010.

(Read more prison break stories.)

My Take on This Story
Show results  |  
9%
32%
4%
22%
20%
14%