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Convict caught after taunting police on video

Matthew Warren · 11 Aug 2011, 07:50

Published: 11 Aug 2011 10:27 GMT+02:00
Updated: 11 Aug 2011 07:50 GMT+02:00

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A 24-year-old offender who made a getaway from police at a court hearing and then taunted them online was finally caught on Wednesday.

Saïd Bahmed had been taken to court in Besançon in eastern France on June 27th when he managed to slip through an automatic door as it was closing and make his escape.

He resurfaced again in early August in a video that showed him laughing, joking and taunting police about his escape. He even brandished the handcuffs that he’d been wearing at the time.

The video, titled “la liberté n’a pas de prix” (freedom has no price), has been watched over 425,000 times on YouTube.

In an interview from a secret location on TV channel France 3 on Monday, Bahmed said he would be happy to hand himself over to police, “if I can be held in a prison in Besançon or nearby.”

Bahmed was rounded up in a police raid on Wednesday morning in the Clair Soleil area of Besançon where he comes from. The arrest happened “without any problems,” said local prosecutor Alain Saffar.

He claimed in the France 3 interview that the video had been an attempt to promote his fledgling career as a rapper. Perhaps wary of how police might react when they finally caught up with them he also apologized for any offence caused.

Barring any further escapes, Bahmed will be back in court on Thursday. He is likely to get an extension to the sentence of one year in prison that was passed in his absence at the original court hearing on June 27th. 

Matthew Warren (news.france@thelocal.com)

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