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CRIME

Three charged with Paris Ritz jewellery heist: judicial source

Three men were charged and detained Saturday over an audacious jewellery heist at the Ritz hotel in Paris this week, while two other suspects were still on the loose, a judicial source said.

Three charged with Paris Ritz jewellery heist: judicial source
Police at the back entrance to the Ritz hotel in Paris on January 10th, 2018. Photo: AFP

The men from the Paris region, who are in their 30s and are known to police, were arrested after becoming trapped by locked doors as they tried to flee the five-star hotel.

They were charged with organised theft using weapons, violence and causing damage.

The robbery on Wednesday evening saw a gang armed with hatchets and handguns burst into the hotel on the capital's glitzy Place Vendome and smash the display windows of jewellery shops on the ground floor.

Wearing balaclavas and gloves, the robbers entered through a rear staff entrance and swiped gems and watches worth over four million euros. All the loot was recovered, according to the source.

Two further suspects are being sought by police.

READ ALSO: A look at the biggest jewellery heists in France

PARIS

Paris police rescue handbag robber from river Seine

Paris police on Tuesday fished a man out of the Seine river, which he jumped into after he rammed a car into a Valentino store and robbed dozens of luxury handbags.

Paris police rescue handbag robber from river Seine

The 24-year-old suspect smashed into the store around 2am on the high-end Rue Saint-Honoré, a police source said.

He grabbed as many as 30 luxury handbags and other items before attempting to flee in the car.

The man then failed to stop when a police patrol gave chase after spotting him near the central Paris Opéra.

He abandoned the car on Place de la Concorde at the end of the Champs-Elysées, the police source said, before plunging into the nearby river Seine.

But river police quickly fished him out and placed him under arrest.

A source familiar with the case said that the “entirety” of the stolen items had been found.

A second source told AFP that “around 30” handbags – which Valentino lists on its website at between €1,000 and €3,000 – were found in his car.

The suspect now faces an investigation for charges including aggravated robbery and refusal to comply with police, Paris prosecutors said.

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