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Axe-wielding thieves in $6.6m heist at famed Paris hotel

Axe-wielding thieves in $6.6m heist at famed Paris hotel

A woman who witnessed armed robbers storm into the Ritz Hotel in Paris to steal items with millions of pounds has described her "total panic" as it unfolded.

Police have detained three of the thieves while at least two others are at large, said the police in the French capital.

He said the bar staff closed and locked the doors and ushered them to the back of the bar, from where he heard at least 10 rounds of gunfire, shouting and screaming outside.

'The attackers then used axes to smash open reinforced glass cases containing jewellery, while filling bags, ' said a source at the world famous hotel, which is in Place Vendome (Vendome Square).

The loot is estimated to be worth more than €4.5 million (US$5.38 million), said local media.

"He had an axe in his hand".

Police at the scene of a robbery at the Ritz
Police at the scene of a robbery at the Ritz Sky News

Wednesday's robbery took place a year and half after the hotel re-opened its palatial doors to guests after almost four years of renovations and a massive fire.

The former home of fashion designer Coco Chanel and author Marcel Proust, the Ritz was a favourite drinking hole of American writer Ernest Hemingway.

Hemingway famously "liberated" the bar after arriving in Parison a tank at the end of the German Occupation in 1944.

The five-star residence, owned by Mohamed Al-Fayed, is no stranger to controversy.

The luxurious Ritz is in Paris' First Arrondissement, a district located principally on the Right Bank of the Seine River, and includes five shops and almost 100 "showcases" that sell jewelry and luxury goods, BBC reported.

Princess Diana had dined in the hotel's Imperial Suite on August 31, 1997, shortly before her tragic death in a auto crash in Paris.

More news: Santa Delivered Many Smart Speakers In 2017


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