French Gangster Redoine Faid Escapes Prison Again, Armed Accomplices Hijack Helicopter, Use Smoke Bombs
Redoine Faid, an infamous French gangster, has managed to escape prison not only once but now twice. However, he couldn’t manage it alone, he had help from armed friends who hijacked a helicopter and used smoke bombs during the breakout.
On Sunday, Faid escaped a prison near Paris. He was serving a 25-year sentence for organizing a robbery in which a police officer was killed.
Three unidentified men threatened the pilot with assault rifles, forcing him to fly to Faid’s prison in Seine-et-Marne. When they arrived, two of the men opened the prison door with a grinding machine. The third stayed back with the pilot and the helicopter. Dressed in all black, the men deployed smoke bombs when they took Faid, who was in a meeting with his brother in the visitation room. Reportedly, the escape only took a few minutes.
Faid’s accomplices originally hijacked the helicopter in Fontenay-Trésigny at a small flying club. The pilot and instructor was waiting for a student when they forced him to fly to Faid’s prison.
Later, the men drove towards A1 motorway in a black Renault Megane. The car was found in a suburb of Paris burnt out. By the afternoon, it was reported that Faid and his accomplices switched into a white van. They are still on the run.
In 2013, Faid had broken out of prison using explosives concealed in tissues.
France’s Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet called the incident a “spectacular escape.” She visited to the Sud-Francilien prison following the breakout.
“It was an extremely well-prepared commando unit that may have used drones to survey the area beforehand,” she said.
The prison courtyard where the helicopter landed was not guarded with anti-aircraft netting. Prison union representative Martial Delabroye said inmates don’t use that area unless they “leave the prison.”
Nobody was injured during the process of the escape, but the hostage pilot was taken to the hospital enduring shock.