Europe 1 with AFP // Photo credits: Benoit PEYRUCQ / AFP 21:38 p.m., October 17, 2023

Rédoine Faïd, the man who spectacularly escaped from prison by helicopter in 2018, is on trial alongside 11 people. A 22-year prison sentence was demanded on Tuesday before the Paris Assize Court against the "king of beauty".

A 22-year prison sentence was requested on Tuesday before the Paris Assize Court against the "king of beauty" Rédoine Faïd, tried alongside 11 people for his spectacular escape by helicopter from the prison of Réau (Seine-et-Marne) in 2018. In the box, the multi-recidivist robber with the bald head greeted these requisitions with a smile and an indifferent whistle.

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Rédoine Faïd "acknowledges all the facts"

For his five relatives, suspected of having helped him during the escape or the three-month escape that followed, the prosecution asked for sentences ranging from four to 15 years in prison, and the acquittal of the brother who was in the visiting room with him at the time of the events, for lack of evidence that he was informed. Rédoine Faïd "admits all the facts", the prosecution admitted at the end of an indictment lasting nearly seven hours in two voices, and after a month and a half of hearings. "Having said that, it was impossible for him to deny the escape from his own visiting room."

On July 1, 2018, at the end of the morning, an armed commando landed in a helicopter in front of the Réau prison after taking the pilot hostage. They threw smoke bombs and sawed off several fences to gain access to the visiting rooms where the robber, now 51, was staying. A "meticulously prepared" escape within a "family unit", relatives whom the multi-recidivist robber "sacrificed" to regain his freedom, the prosecution argued.

"7 minutes 33"

This escape, without a shot being fired, lasted "7 minutes and 33 minutes", recalls the attorney general. It was the second for Rédoine Faïd, who had already made a spectacular escape in 2013 from Sequedin prison in the north of France, taking guards hostage and blowing up the doors with explosives.

Rédoine Faïd "refuses to submit to the execution of the long sentences that remain to him" to be served, and favors "the violent reconquest of his freedom," the attorney general said. "This freedom addict who doesn't rule out your audience escaping again" doesn't "seek freedom, he snatches it." Rédoine Faïd, whose sentence is currently scheduled to end in 2046, faces life imprisonment. His co-defendants face between 10 and 30 years in prison. Defense arguments are scheduled to begin Wednesday and conclude Friday. On Monday, the court is scheduled to hear the defendants' final words before retiring to deliberate. The verdict is expected on Wednesday 25 October.