Gone in 30 seconds: Homeless man at Paris airport takes €490,000 from unlocked office & vanishes

Gone in 30 seconds: Homeless man at Paris airport takes €490,000 from unlocked office & vanishes
Christmas came early for a homeless man at Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport who stumbled on two bags of cash holding €490,000, after he “accidentally” leaned on a door at one of the terminals.

The man, only identified by airport police as a 40-year old of North African origin, was spending most of his time rummaging through trash bins at Charles de Gaulle International Airport in late 2017.

In December, he “accidentally” leaned on a door at one of the terminals which turned out to be the entrance to the office of a cash handling company. It remains unknown why the company that collects money from airport shops, ATMs and arriving planes kept its premises unlocked. 

It took the homeless man only 32 seconds to help himself by coming in, grabbing two bags from the office and heading into an area with no CCTV surveillance.

While it was initially estimated that €300,000 ($360,000) were in the bags, the amount of the stolen cash has now been updated to €490,000 ($590,000), Le Parisien reported Thursday citing a source familiar with the case. The notes appear to be untraceable, as the cash was a "fresh collection," with handlers not having dealt with it by the time the homeless man had his hands on it.

READ MORE: The Case of the Thief in a Case: Man hides in bag to steal from airport bus

"At first we thought it was a setup, but it looks like it was just luck," AFP cited a police source as saying.

While the investigation is ongoing, the man is still missing. "It is possible that he has since left [France] through Belgium or any other European country. He would then be able to take a plane back to his home country or make a new life in the sun," the source told Le Parisien.

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