A pair of armed robbers thought they had it all worked out when they stormed into a McDonald’s. They were wearing masks, armed with shotguns, and had their plan all laid out.
But one thing they didn’t have a plan for was an entire special operations team that happened to be eating lunch inside the restaurant, dressed in civilian clothing.
Some 40 plus customers chomping away on their burgers Sunday evening in the fast food restaurant when the two robbers stormed in, fired a shotgun blast into the air, threatening the guests and ordering staff to open the cash registers, which contained just under $2,300 in cash.
“At first, I did not realize there was a gunshot,” said 20-year-old Antony, who works in the kitchen.
The robbers went about committing their crime completely unaware that 11 members of the French special forces, Groupe d’Intervention de la Gendarmerie Nationale, or GIGN – the anti-terrorism equivalent of the British SAS – who were none too amused at having their meal of Big Macs and french fries disturbed by two bumbling criminals.
The commandos kept their cool during the robbery, but leaped into action as it wound down to avoid any collateral bloodshed.
Edwige Roux-Morizot, the local prosecutor, told reporters: “During the hold-up, the gendarmes didn’t do anything. It was out of the question to use their weapons, as this would have created difficulties and could have placed many people’s lives in danger.”
The battle hardened warriors pounced when the first of the robbers stumbled on his way out the front door, taking him into custody without any gun play, but did suffer some injuries during the aggressive arrest.
The second robber wasn’t as smart and turned his gun towards the GIGN operators after being told to drop the weapon. He was shot multiple times in the stomach.
Both suspects were transported to the hospital for treatment and now sit in jail awaiting trial on armed robbery charges.
GIGN was formed in 1972 as a direct response to the Munich Olympic massacre where Palestinian terrorists took 11 Israeli athletes hostage, killing them all.
More recently, GIGN received worldwide video coverage of their operations following the Charlie Hebdo attacks and the bombing at the Bataclan theater.