'Spiderman' arrested trying to climb tower

20th March 2007, Comments 0 comments

KUALA LUMPUR, March 20, 2007 (AFP) - French "Spiderman" Alain Robert was arrested on Tuesday two-thirds of the way through a daredevil attempt to scale Malaysia's Petronas Twin Towers without ropes or safety equipment.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 20, 2007 (AFP) - French "Spiderman" Alain Robert was arrested on Tuesday two-thirds of the way through a daredevil attempt to scale Malaysia's Petronas Twin Towers without ropes or safety equipment.

The 44-year-old rock-climber, brandishing a Malaysian flag, was grabbed by firemen waiting on the 60th floor of one of the 88-storey towers, previously the world's tallest buildings.

"As he was climbing up, we managed to coax him to stop and get back into the building," fire department spokesman Christopher Chong told reporters.

"He smiled, said, 'Okay' and waved the Malaysian flag at us before we pulled him in through the window."

Robert was stopped on the same floor when he attempted the same stunt exactly 10 years ago.

A crowd of up to 500 onlookers cheered the Frenchman as he was bundled into a waiting police car below.

"We are arresting him because he climbed the building without a permit from the management," a police officer said.

At least 20 policemen and a fire engine with some 15 firemen were sent to the building.

Traffic along the road facing the towers slowed to watch Robert, clad in black pants and yellow shirt, while many used mobile camera phones to record the feat.

Robert's attempt was also witnessed by the president of the French Senate, Christian Poncelet, who is on an official visit to Malaysia.

"There are always people who look to distinguish themselves from others but he could have done it elsewhere," Poncelet said.

"This attempt is risky," he added.

Chong said the fire department was familiar with Robert's "stunts," since he had tried to scale the same building on March 20, 1997.

Robert was freed without charge after that attempt.

He has been nicknamed "Spiderman" for his high-profile escapades which include climbing the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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