A notorious gangster has escaped by helicopter from a prison in the Paris region, French authorities say.
Redoine Faid escaped after three heavily armed accomplices landed the helicopter in the prison courtyard.
Faid, 46, has been serving a 25-year sentence for a failed robbery during which a police officer was killed.
This is his second prison break: in 2013, he escaped after taking four guards hostage as human shields and destroying a number of doors.
He staged that escape less than half an hour after arriving at a prison in northern France.
In 2009 he wrote a book about his experiences of growing up in Paris’s crime-ridden suburbs and graduating into a life of crime.
He claimed to have turned his back on crime, but a year later he was involved in the failed robbery for which he was imprisoned at the Seine-et-Marne prison.
Faid and his accomplices escaped from the prison courtyard – which was not protected by a net – without injuring anyone, French news website Europe 1 reports.
The helicopter then flew to the nearby Bourget area. It was then found burnt out by local police.