Gunmen free prisoners from court

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The Independent Online

Police launched a massive manhunt after three balaclava-clad gunmen burst into Slough magistrates court and freed two prisoners.

Police launched a massive manhunt after three balaclava-clad gunmen burst into Slough magistrates court and freed two prisoners.

The defendants were Ricky Loveridge, 22, on remand for conspiracy to burgle, and Richard Hurley, 19, on remand for burglary

The pair had been in the Berkshire court with third defendent when the gunmen entered the court, fired a single shot into the air and freed them.

The third defendent at the time stayed in the dock while his co-defendents escaped in a waiting car, injuring a policeman by hitting him over the head with their gun butts on the way out.

A Royal Berkshire Ambulance Service spokesman said crews were called to reports of a policeman being assaulted but said he was not taken to hospital.

There were no reports of any gunshot injuries.

A police spokesman said the gun had been fired several times.

He said: "It would appear a number of people entered a court and assisted the escape of two men who were appearing before the court.

"During the incident a firearm was discharged several times inside the courtroom.

"The courts are currently shut while a full forensic examination by scenes of crime officers takes place.

"A police officer was injured in the incident but it was not related to the discharging of the firearm in any way. No-one else was injured during the incident.

"Police are currently searching Slough and the surrounding areas for all the people involved in the incident."

Detectives are trying to trace a silver four-wheel drive Subaru Impreza car which is believed to have been used in the escape.

The incident happened at 12.40pm.

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