Dramatic end to bank siege
6 April 2004
ALICANTE – A 12-hour bank siege came to a dramatic end after a kidnapper was captured as he tried to escape on motorbike given to him by police, it was reported Tuesday.
The man, who claimed he was armed with a bomb and a gun, held eight hostages when he burst into a bank in Alicante in eastern Spain early Monday.
After more than 12 hours, police agreed to the kidnapper’s demand for a motorbike on condition he gave up his last hostage.
But as he drove through the streets at high-speed, a police car crashed into him and he was arrested.
The kidnapper was injured and taken to hospital.
The drama started around 9.30am when the man burst into the bank, a branch of the Banco Popular.
Reports initially said he was holding between five and 10 people hostage in the bank.
But it emerged that five clients and three bank workers were being held.
After three hours, he began releasing hostages.
By 3.30pm, he had released six of the eight people who were thought to have been taken hostage.
At 10pm Tuesday, police gave the man a EUR 12,000 high-performance bike after he demanded that the authorities “let him live a little”.
Police described the man as a drug addict, who had demanded a gram of heroin as well as tobacco and alcohol.
As the drama unfolded, the seven-storey building housing the bank was evacuated and police were speaking to the hostage-taker by telephone.
A cordon was set up around the bank.
Police units and a helicopter were deployed around the area.
The man’s father was brought to the scene to appeal to the kidnapper to give up his hostages.
None of the hostages were said to have been injured by the kidnapper.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news