Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Macron in Washington: Can he change Trump's Foreign Policy?

Read more

FOCUS

Catalonia's pro-independence movement tempted by radicalisation

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: 'May ’68', Director’s Fortnight reloaded, 'A Paris Education'

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Macron and Trump: Dandruff diplomacy?

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Big data: ‘A key democratic issue’

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Susan Meiselas: Kurdistan through the lens

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Global wine production drops to lowest level in 60 years

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Trump and Macron media moments in the US

Read more

ENCORE!

Photographer Clare Strand explores the causes and consequences of communication breakdown

Read more

France

Prison break Pink Panther suspect found in France

© Photo: AFP

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-08-21

A suspected member of the infamous jewel-thieving Pink Panther group was arrested in France on Wednesday three months after escaping prison in Switzerland. The man, who is wanted in several countries, was detained at his home near Montpellier.

French police have arrested a suspected member of the infamous Pink Panther gang of international jewel thieves who had been on the run since escaping from a Swiss prison in May.

A police source said Wednesday that the 47-year-old, born in Montenegro but with French and Macedonian citizenships, was detained at his home in the southern Montpellier region on Monday.

The source said the suspect failed to escape out a window during his arrest.

A former member of the French Foreign Legion, the suspect was wanted in several countries, including under two international arrest warrants issued by Switzerland, where he had been in prison for armed robbery.

On May 14, he had escaped with four other prisoners from the Bois-Mermet prison, near Lausanne, using weapons and tools passed to them from accomplices on the outside.

Two of the escapees were detained the next day and two remain at large, including a 45-year-old Serb also believed to be a member of the Pink Panthers.

The Pink Panthers emerged from the conflict in the former Yugoslavia to become the most successful jewel thieves in the world.

According to Interpol, they have since 1999 snatched jewels with a value in excess of 330 million euros ($440 million) in heists that are often executed with breathtaking speed and precision.

They gained their nickname with a raid on a London branch of Graff Diamonds in 2003, in which two of them posed as wealthy would-be customers, persuading staff to open doors for them before helping themselves to diamonds worth millions.

Although one of the robbers was overpowered at the scene and another later arrested, only a fraction of the diamonds were recovered, one of them hidden in a pot of face cream.

That was reminiscent of a scene from the 1975 film "The Return of the Pink Panther" and resulted in a nickname that the gang members themselves adopted, wearing pink shirts for a subsequent raid in Zurich.

(AFP)

Date created : 2013-08-21

  • CANADA

    Two inmates escape from Quebec jail in helicopter

    Read more

  • TUNISIA

    Prison blaze kills dozens after botched escape attempt

    Read more

COMMENT(S)