Israeli flies drone in Paris, spends night in jail

Twenty-four-year-old tourist ordered to pay $500 fine, says he was unaware operating aircraft was illegal

A view of Paris (photo credit: Yossi Zamir/Flash90)
A view of Paris (photo credit: Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

An Israeli tourist who was arrested in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral while flying a drone above some of Paris’s main attractions, was slapped with a 400-euro ($500) fine on Thursday, after spending the night in jail.

The 24-year-old tourist had launched the drone, equipped with a Go-Pro camera, above the famous Gothic church on Wednesday morning, and sent it hovering over the historic Hotel Dieu hospital and a police station, a police source told AFP.

The source said the drone had been spotted on police surveillance cameras. When officers arrived on the church square, the tourist said he was not aware flying a drone in Paris was illegal.

The Israeli said he had simply wished to film all Parisian monuments “exclusively for private purposes,” said the police source.

After spending the night in jail he was issued the stiff fine for “operating an aircraft non-compliant with safety laws”, said a judicial source.

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