- Paris mastermind Abdelhamid Abaaoud pictured strolling through Paris
- The snapshots were taken just an hour after he slaughtered up to 20 people
- These are the first images to show Abaaoud on the night of the violence
- Rather than flee he took a train to the city centre, the scene of his crimes
Seemingly nonchalant, hands in his pockets, the ringleader of the Paris attacks strolls into a Metro station wearing garish orange trainers. It is 10.14 pm on the night that stunned the world.
Having slaughtered up to 20 people in cafes and bars with an automatic rifle just an hour earlier, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, 28, has abandoned his AK-47 and his rented black Seat car at Montreuil, an eastern suburb of the French capital
With police flooding the city, he might be expected to disappear into the night. But, chillingly, his murderous work is by no means over
Nonchalant: The mastermind behind the Paris massacres, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, 28, is pictured taking a train on the night of November 13, just an hour after he slaughtered up to 20 people in cafes and bars with an automatic rifle. But rather than flee the city, he returned to its centre to view his bloody work
Instead, from Montreuil’s Croix de Chavaux station and accompanied by an unidentified man, he takes Line 9 straight back to the city centre, the scene of his appalling crimes: first to revel in the aftermath, and then to orchestrate yet more carnage.
These remarkable pictures, the first to show Abaaoud on the night of the attacks that killed 130 people on November 13, are from surveillance film released yesterday, along with a more precise account of the monstrous sequence of events.
Evil: Abaaoud, who opened fire on cafes and bars in the Paris suburbs on November 13, then took a train back to the city centre to orchestrate the attack on the Bataclan theatre, where 90 people died
In another image, one of Abaaoud’s fellow Islamic State (IS) fanatics, Brahim Abdeslam, is shown inside the Comptoir Voltaire cafe at 9.41 pm, walking between seated customers, seconds before he activates his suicide belt.
Witnesses saw white smoke coming from his coat, followed by two flashes. He landed on a table where two young men were seated, a gaping hole in his back.
Feathers from Abdeslam’s anorak filled the room. Mercifully, while several customers were seriously injured, he killed only himself. His blood was later found to show traces of cannabis.
Meanwhile, with the journey from Croix de Chavaux to central Paris taking around 25 minutes, by 11pm Abaaoud was mingling with horrified witnesses to his carnage in the 10th arrondissement.
Perhaps doing so sharpened his sense of satisfaction as he surveyed his dreadful handiwork. Some recalled how clean-cut and relaxed he seemed; some remembered his orange trainers.
Abaaoud then drifted towards the Bataclan concert hall, where 150 people were still being held hostage. Crouching in a doorway, he directed the final murderous scenes unfolding inside by whispering instructions into his mobile phone. In all, 89 men and women died in the theatre.
Earlier phone records showed Abaaoud had similarly controlled Bilal Hadfi, one of the bombers who blew himself up at the Stade de France.
The Paris prosecutor, Francis Molins, said records showed Abaaoud’s phone was in the vicinity of the city centre attacks until 12.28am. Only then did he melt away. For four nights he slept in a thicket near the A86 autoroute.
Attack: In another image, one of Abaaoud’s fellow Islamic State (IS) fanatics, Brahim Abdeslam, is shown inside the Comptoir Voltaire cafe at 9.41 pm, walking between seated customers, seconds before he activates his suicide belt
The following day, Abaaoud, his female cousin Hasna Ait Boulahcen and other gunmen died in a police raid on an apartment in the northern Paris suburb of Saint Denis. Abaaoud was still wearing his orange trainers.
Investigators said Abaaoud and the others died when an unidentified accomplice detonated a suicide vest. The 5,000 rounds fired by police didn’t touch them.
Fanatic: Feathers from Abdeslam’s anorak filled the cafe after he detonated his suicide vest, killing himself and injuring customers
It later emerged that Abaaoud had pictures of locations in Birmingham stored on his smartphone, raising the possibility that his cell was planning atrocities in Britain.
Other footage that emerged yesterday showed that Brahim Abdeslam, his brother Salah Abdeslam and another jihadi, Mohamed Abrini, travelled to Paris from Brussels in a Renault Clio in the early hours of November 13.
They headed first to Charleroi, an hour south of Brussels, where they are understood to have picked up weapons. At 4pm they headed to the French-Belgian border and at 5.40pm the trio stopped at a service station. Surveillance footage shows Abrini and the Abdeslam brothers get out of the Clio before walking around the station shop.
The car, rented by Salah Abdeslam, was found abandoned in the 18th arrondissement of Paris. Salah, who managed to escape police, is still on the run, the most wanted man in Europe.
Yesterday it emerged that Belgian police found three suicide belts, explosives and Salah’s fingerprint at a Brussels flat that may have served as a bomb factory.
Prosecutors said Salah Abdeslam might have hidden in the flat after the November 13 attacks. They are working on the theory the explosive devices used in the massacre could have been made there.
The discovery was made on December 10 during a search of an apartment in the Schaerbeek area of the Belgian capital, but investigators would not say why they waited a month to announce it. The flat, on Rue Henri Berge, was rented by someone using a false name, possibly another suspect now in custody over the attacks, they said.
It emerged last week that the three teams dispatched by IS to attack Paris received instructions in real time via mobile phone from someone in Brussels.
Horror: A French policeman assists a blood-covered victim near the Bataclan theatre, where 90 people were killed on the night of the Paris attacks after ISIS gunmen opened fire on the crowd
Survivor: Rescue workers help a woman after the massacre at the Bataclan theatre, which Paris mastermind Abaaoud took a train back to the city centre from the suburbs to help orchestrate