Author Topic: Gunman At Large in Paris  (Read 347 times)

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Offline flowers

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Gunman At Large in Paris
« on: November 18, 2013, 12:05:59 PM »

PARIS—A manhunt was under way Monday in central Paris for a lone gunman suspected in two shootings and a brief hostage-taking that prosecutors are treating as possibly terrorist-related.

Police said it was unclear what motivated the attacks, but a spokeswoman for the Paris prosecutor's office said it was being treated as a terrorist case. She didn't provide any more details ahead of a news conference by Prosecutor François Molins.

Ranking the shooting spree as a terrorism case would give judicial authorities more time to interrogate the suspect once he is apprehended. Under a terrorism probe, police can hold a suspect for up to 96 hours without filing preliminary charges, compared with 48 hours in traditional investigations.

Paris prosecutors have nationwide jurisdiction in terrorism cases. Under the French criminal code, terrorism is defined as any threat to public order through intimidation or terror.

The violence began Monday morning when a man opened fire at the headquarters of the left-leaning newspaper Libération, near the Place de la République in eastern Paris, leaving an assistant photographer badly wounded.

About two hours later, a gunman appeared outside the headquarters of the French bank Société Générale SA in the La Defense business district in western Paris, a bank spokeswoman said. The man fired shots but no one was hurt.
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Police officers patrol at the Trocadero Esplanade in front of the Eiffel Tower on Monday. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
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French police officers cordoned the area where an assailant opened fire next to newspaper Liberation's headquarters in Paris on Monday. Reuters
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French Interior Minister Manuel Valls, center, Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe, second left, Paris Deputy Mayor Anne Hidalgo, left, and Libération executives, arrive at the newspaper's headquarters on Monday. Reuters

The assailant then fled, taking one man hostage and forcing him to drive to the Champs Élysées in central Paris. The shooter then got out In front of the luxury Georges V hotel and fled on foot, a police officer said. A police helicopter was circling the famous thoroughfare as officials sought to find him.

Police said they were acting on the hypothesis that the same man was behind all events. The type of ammunition used in both shootings was the same, and witnesses said in both cases the shooter was wearing a dark coat, police said.

Offline mountaineer

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Re: Gunman At Large in Paris
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2013, 12:38:24 PM »

Looks like Justin Bieber
18 November 2013

A manhunt has been launched in Paris after a gunman attacked offices of the newspaper Liberation and fired outside the HQ of the bank Societe Generale.

A photographer, 27, was critically hurt at Liberation. The gunman later forced a motorist to drive him to the Champs Elysees before allowing him to go.

Police are looking for the same man who broke into the Paris offices of the 24-hour news channel BFMTV on Friday.

Police have now been stationed outside all the main media offices in Paris.

At a news conference, investigators held up two images, one of the suspect in a street and another picture, from BFMTV surveillance cameras, which was earlier shown on Le Parisien's website.

Paris prosecutor Francis Molins said the "most likely possibility" was that a lone gunman was behind the three attacks and the hijacking. He said the suspect had not yet been identified and the motive was still unclear.

The man is said to be between 35 and 45 years old, between 1.7m and 1.8m tall (5ft 6" and 5ft 10") and shaven-headed.

The BBC's Christian Fraser in Paris says the gunman had walked into BFMTV on Friday morning and emptied the chamber of his gun in the reception area.

"Next time, I will not miss you," the man had said to an editor he threatened.

Christian Fraser in Paris says there is a "huge manhunt" under way. Our correspondent says that, for a time on Monday, a police helicopter hung over the Champs Elysees amid fears the gunman might be heading towards the Eiffel Tower, but it is speculated that he might have gone into the metro.

People have been encouraged to stay indoors.

Police say the suspect is calm and assured, our correspondent reports, and each time has walked away from the scene of his attacks.

French media say the suspect told the motorist he hijacked that he was armed with grenades.

President Francois Hollande, who is in Israel, said the priority was "to stop an individual who had tried to kill and could try to kill again".

'I won't miss'
At 10:15 local time (09:15 GMT) on Monday, the gunman entered the Paris offices of Liberation, near the Place de la Republique in the east of the city, and opened fire.

Liberation Deputy Editor Francois Sergent: "It was [the photographer's] first day working for Liberation"

He injured a photographer in the chest and stomach before escaping. Liberation said three spent cartridges had been found.

The gunman did not say anything during the attack, Liberation reported.

Some two hours later, the bank Societe Generale confirmed that a man opened fire outside its headquarters in the western business district of La Defense. No-one was injured, the bank said.

One witness of the bank shooting told Le Figaro that he heard a large bang and saw a man wearing a khaki coat and a cap and carrying a shotgun.

The gunman's second shot caused panic and the man then disappeared down some stairs on to a street, the witness said.

Another witness, Pierre-Albert Garcias, said: "We thought it was an explosion at first, it didn't sound like gunshots.

"I turned around and the man was in front of me, 10 metres away. He was actually reloading his gun. So we all ran for cover, we got down on our stomachs behind a wall."

Police arriving at Liberation's Paris offices to investigate the shooting (18 November) A police investigation is now under way, with media offices protected Liberation president Nicolas Demorand (18 November) The president of Liberation, Nicolas Demorand (centre), described the attack as "very, very serious" Interior Minister Manuel Valls arrives at the scene of Monday's shooting (18 November) Interior Minister Manuel Valls went to Liberation's offices Police outside Societe Generale, La Defense (18 November) Police went to the headquarters of Societe Generale at La Defense after a report of shots fired outside the buildings A bullet impacted with a window at the Societe Generale site, 18 Nov A bullet was shot through a window at the Societe Generale site Champs Elysees, 18 Nov The gunman hijacked a car to the Champs Elysees and is believed to have escaped
Police say the gunman then hijacked a car in Nanterre, close to La Defense, and forced the driver to take him to the Champs Elysees, where he was dropped near the metro station George V.

Liberation's deputy editor Fabrice Tassel said the victim there was fighting for his life.

The victim - who has not been named - was said to be a freelance assistant photographer who had just arrived at the newspaper office to work on a fashion photoshoot.

Police have sealed off the area around Liberation's offices. Interior Minister Manuel Valls has visited the scene, along with Culture Minister Aurelie Filippetti and the Mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoe.

Mr Valls said: "As long as this person is still on the loose and we do not know the motives, this represents a threat. We must move fast."

Liberation's publisher Nicolas Demorand said: "In a democracy, when someone enters a newspaper office with a gun, this is very, very serious, whatever the person's mental state."
A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.

Offline Oceander

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Re: Gunman At Large in Paris
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2013, 01:21:29 PM »
Ahh, yes, gun control stikes again (France has rather restrictive gun control laws).

Offline Atomic Cow

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Re: Gunman At Large in Paris
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2013, 01:24:37 PM »
Check the local mosques.
"...And these atomic bombs which science burst upon the world that night were strange, even to the men who used them."  H. G. Wells, The World Set Free, 1914

"The one pervading evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather of that party, not always the majority, that succeeds, by force or fraud, in carrying elections." -Lord Acton

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