Denmark: Escape at a funeral

A Lebanese man serving a jail term in Denmark was able to escape with the help of a crowd at his mother's funeral, for which he had been given leave to attend, police said on Wednesday.

Hassan Mohammed El-Souki, 30, who was serving 14 years behind bars for having helped smuggle 45.5kg of cocaine into Denmark, broke loose from the four police officers accompanying him to his mother's funeral on Tuesday in a Copenhagen suburb, when other participants created a commotion.

Dozens of people suddenly began running in the middle of the Muslim burial, creating so much confusion that Souki managed to break free and dive into a waiting car with tinted windows and no licence plates before it roared off.

"The escape seemed to be well-planned by the prisoner's friends who squeezed in between him and the police officers and threw stones at police as they tried to catch him," Copenhagen police officer Jesper Simonsen told AFP.

It "has not been ruled out that the prisoner has managed to leave Denmark", despite the fact that border police were quickly alerted to his escape and a nation-wide media campaign had been launched to find him, he added.

Souki, who was handed his sentence last December, was to be permanently expelled from Denmark once he had finished serving his term.

Source: News24 (English)

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