March 23, 2018

Hatchet-wielding raiders steal jewellery worth millions from Ritz Hotel in Paris

11 January 2018, 09:26 | Darnell Patrick

Police stand in rue Cambon at the back entrance of the Ritz luxury hotel after the armed robbery

Police stand in rue Cambon at the back entrance of the Ritz luxury hotel after the armed robbery

"The loss is very high and remains to be assessed", one police source said.

Five men armed with axes smashed a window at the shop inside the hotel at about 18:00 local time (17:00 GMT), French media report.

The city's police commissioner issued a statement on Twitter thanking officers for their quick reactions, which led to the arrest of three men.

Three of the robbers were arrested but police are still hunting for two suspects who managed to flee the five star hotel, situated on the Place Vendôme, on mopeds.

"Two others got out the back door of the hotel and were seen running away, and then getting on mopeds".

Speaking to Sky News, a witness said they heard gunfire and recalled seeing a man wearing a ski mask and carrying an axe.

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Some of the thieves were thought to have been armed with axes.

The French TV station BFM said that €4.7m (£4.16m) worth of jewels have been taken.

The hotel was bought in 1979 by Mohamed Al-Fayed, whose son Dodi was also killed in the fatal crash.

It is known as one of the most luxurious hotels in the world with 159 rooms and re-opened in 2016 and it underwent a multi-million pound refurbishment.

It was the last place Princess Diana stayed before her fatal auto crash and is popular with elite guests from around the world.

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