Axe-wielding robbers launched a spectacular raid on the world-famous Ritz hotel in Paris Wednesday, making off with an estimated four million euros worth of jewels.
The gang of five men armed with hatchets smashed display windows on the ground floor of the hotel in Paris' luxurious Place Vendome around 6:30 pm, making off with the jewels.
Three of the gang were detained while fleeing the scene. Two people were still being sought by authorities on Thursday evening.
There were no injuries.
Several luxury brands display their jewels in the street-front windows of the Ritz.
A judicial source put the value of the jewels seized at "more than four million euros" ($4.75 million).
"The loss is very high and remains to be assessed," one police source said. Another put the figure at 4.5 million euros ($5.38 million), but said that a bag had been recovered possibly containing some of the loot.
Interior minister Gerard Collomb praised officers' "professionalism", saying they had "done our police force credit".
Paris prosecutors have opened a probe into the robbery, according to a judicial source.
Place Vendome, with its opulent window displays of jewellers and high-end watchmakers, has been the scene of several audacious daytime raids.