Ritz Paris robbery: jewels recovered but two gang members still on run

BREAKING NEWS: Three arrested and two on the run after masked robbers open fire at Ritz Hotel in Paris before making off with £3.5million of jewellery

A masked group armed with axes, sledgehammers and guns had stormed the landmark Ritz hotel in the chic Place Vendome in central Paris.

The estimated value of the theft is reported to be at least £3.5 million, according to French police sources.

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

French police said Thursday some of the jewels stolen from the upscale Ritz Hotel in Paris have been found, while authorities were still searching for two suspects involved in the robbery. Two people inside the hotel hid from the thieves and alerted police, the official said.

Though ultimately unsuccessful, the robbery on Wednesday evening raised questions about security in one of the world's most prestigious neighbourhoods, the Place Vendome.

Interior Minister Gérard Collomb also offered praise, saying they were "a credit to our police". "We didn't know what was going on until someone told us there had been a robbery".

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One of the suspects still on the loose left the scene on a motorcycle and later dropped a bag containing jewels.

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

In October 2016, jewellery worth €10m was stolen from the American reality TV star Kim Kardashian in Paris.

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

Several luxury brands display their jewels in the storied Ritz, famous as the lodging of choice for Coco Chanel and Ernest Hemingway as well as Princess Diana, who stayed there before her death in a auto crash in a Paris tunnel in 1997.

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