Manhunt for escaped convict after officers slain in a prison van attack

A large-scale manhunt is currently underway in France as authorities search for armed attackers who ambushed a prison convoy, resulting in the tragic deaths of two prison officers and serious injuries to three others. The inmate being escorted during the incident was also successfully freed by the assailants. In response to this heinous crime, the prime minister has expressed determination in bringing the perpetrators to justice, emphasizing that they will face the consequences for their actions.

“We are actively monitoring your activities, and rest assured, we will locate you and take appropriate measures to ensure justice is served,” declared Prime Minister Gabriel Attal in parliament, receiving a round of applause from fellow lawmakers. “Those responsible will bear the consequences of their actions.”

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin stated that they were making “unprecedented” efforts in the search for the escaped convict, Mohamed Amra, and the assailants who attacked the prison van transporting him. He mentioned that hundreds of officers were mobilized for the operation, which involved the assailants ramming a car into the van before opening fire on Tuesday.

Interpol, the global police organization, announced on Wednesday that it has issued a red notice for the arrest of Amra, a 30-year-old individual, based on a request from France.

Interpol has issued a red notice for the capture of Mohamed Amra, also known as ‘The Fly’, at the request of French authorities. A red notice serves as a global call to law enforcement agencies to find and apprehend a fugitive.

Amra is described as a tall individual standing at about 6 feet. He has wavy brown hair, dark brown eyes, and sports a beard.

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France was deeply shocked by the brutal nature of the attack. Prison workers in Paris and other locations held moments of silence on Wednesday to honor the fallen officers.

Interior Minister Darmanin expressed optimism that Amra could be apprehended “in the coming days.” He revealed that a total of 450 officers have been dispatched to the Normandy region in northern France to conduct an extensive manhunt for the attackers and gather valuable information about their location.

“We are making significant progress,” he stated. “The methods we are using are quite extensive.”

The car, which had been stolen, went through the toll booth a few minutes before the prison convoy and then waited there. As the prison van and another escort vehicle passed through the toll booth on the freeway, the car rammed into the van head-on. The Paris prosecutor’s office confirmed the car’s theft and its deliberate wait at the toll booth.

After the attack, the assailants quickly fled the scene. Investigators later discovered two burned cars, which are currently being examined by authorities.

A 52-year-old captain, who had dedicated almost 30 years of his life to the prison service, was tragically among the officers killed. He was a loving father to two children, as shared by Beccuau. Additionally, the other officer who lost his life was 34 years old and on the verge of becoming a father himself.

Amra, who is now 30 years old, has an extensive criminal record that includes at least 13 convictions for various crimes, including robbery. Her criminal activities started at a young age, with her first conviction occurring when she was only 15 years old.

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Escaped convict has history of violent crime

According to judicial sources, Amra’s criminal record dates back to when he was just 15 years old, with multiple convictions for violent crimes.

The Fly, a 30-year-old inmate from Rouen in northwestern France, is still at large as of Wednesday. Alleged accomplices of his killed two prison officers at a toll station and escaped with him.

In the attack, three additional prison guards sustained injuries, with one currently battling for his life.

Paris chief prosecutor Laure Beccuau informed reporters that he has a strong reputation within the judiciary.

According to an anonymous source familiar with the case, Amra is believed to have strong connections to organized crime. Furthermore, the source suspects that Amra may have ordered several murders that are linked to the illicit drug trade.

According to an anonymous source, Amra is reportedly in charge of his own drug trafficking network.

According to Beccuau, the investigator in charge of the motorway attack case, it is important to note that none of the 13 previous convictions of the suspect were directly linked to the narcotics business. These convictions spanned various crimes, including armed robbery and extortion.

In January 2022, he was imprisoned at Evreux prison in the northwestern Normandy region. He is serving multiple sentences, which include charges of criminal conspiracy, extortion, robbery, armed violence, and involvement in an illegal motor rodeo.

Last week, a conviction for robbery was delivered, marking the most recent legal outcome.

At the time of his escape, he also had two new charges pending against him. One was for attempted murder, and the other was for involvement in a gangland killing in Marseille, a city on the French Riviera known for its drug trafficking and gang violence.

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