Convicted murderer tries to escape by helicopter

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TRIKIALA, Greece—A dramatic and complex prison escape attempt was thwarted by some quick-thinking guards in Greece on Sunday.

In a hail of gunfire, a helicopter swooped into a prison courtyard and lowered a rope to help a convicted killer escape.

A passenger in the helicopter peppered guard towers with gunfire from an AK-47.

The convicted murderer climbed the rope to get in the chopper as guards returned fire.

He ended up falling ten feet, hurting his legs when he hit the ground.

The helicopter lost power and had to land in the prison’s parking lot.

Prison officials say they recovered more than 500 shell casings fired from the aircraft.

Authorities say it was the fourth escape attempt by Panagiotis Vlastos, a convicted murderer and racketeer serving a life sentence.

It’s not clear if the helicopter pilot and passenger had willingly participated in the escape attempt or had been forced to do it.

This is the third time a helicopter has been used to escape from a Greek prison.

Both other times were successful.

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