A CAR loaded with weapons and thought to have been involved in a hold-up on a casino in Aix-en-Provence has been intercepted at the French-Spanish border, but a second one managed to get away and enter the country, say National Police.
French authorities say a group of men burst into the premises and held the owners up at gunpoint, causing panic to break out among members of the public who thought it was a terrorist attack.
About 15 people were injured in the crush as they tried to escape.
This was in the early hours of yesterday (Saturday) morning, and at around 15.30hrs border police found two pistols, two shotguns, a bullet-proof vest and two hand grenades in a vehicle they pulled over at the border in La Jonquera (Girona province).
It was one of two French-registered vehicles police suspected of being loaded with weapons, but the second one fled over the border into Spain.
A Moroccan man with a French passport – which is being checked to see whether it it real or forged – has been arrested.
Spanish police are now searching for a grey Rénault Mégane with a French number plate, but do not know for certain whether it was travelling in convoy with the other car pulled over.
The vehicle stopped and searched had been stolen the day before in Nice, France, and the arrested man has an existing criminal record in the country for handling stolen goods.
Spanish police do not believe the occupants are terrorists, but suspect them of belonging to an organised criminal gang.