TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – French police launched a massive manhunt across the country for a notorious gangster after he pulled off a spectacular jailbreak Sunday, fleeing his prison aboard a hijacked helicopter.

Redoine Faid, 46, inspired by Hollywood films like "Scarface", broke out of the prison near Paris with the help of two accomplices who used smoke bombs and angle grinders to make their way into the facility's visiting room where Faid was talking to a brother, who was later taken into custody, according to prison unionist Martial Delabroye and a judicial source.

The men quickly made their escape in the helicopter in a commando-style operation lasting just 10 minutes, Delabroye told AFP at the penitentiary in Reau in the French capital's southeastern suburbs.

Some "2,900 police and gendarmes have been mobilised" for a nationwide manhunt, a police source told AFP.