Notorious Carlos the Jackal house for chop

A HOUSE in St John's Wood where a Venezuelan terrorist carried out his first assassination attempt in December 1973 looks set to be demolished

Susanna Wilkey

A HOUSE in St John's Wood where a Venezuelan terrorist carried out his first assassination attempt in December 1973 looks set to be demolished.

With a scarf around his face Ilich Ramirez Sanchez - better known as Carlos the Jackal - knocked on the front door of the mock Georgian house on Queen's Grove.

He then shot Joseph Edward Sieff, the president of Marks and Spencer and honorary vice-president of the British Zionist Federation.


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In the years that followed Carlos the Jackal became one of the world's most notorious terrorists after he murdered, bombed and kidnapped his way to infamy.

Now, 34 years after the shooting in NW8, the house where events unfolded could be demolished and rebuilt as a modern family home.

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Plans have been lodged with Camden Council to knock down and rebuild the house complete with a swimming pool, games room and servants' quarters.

Carlos was associated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and as a prominent member of the Jewish community Sieff was a target.

The attempt on his life was prompted by the Mossad assassination of Mohamed Boudia - a theatre director accused of being a PFLP leader in Paris.

Carlos strolled up to the front door of the St John's Wood mansion where the butler answered the door.

He pointed the gun at him and demanded to be taken to Sieff. As they climbed the stairs, Sieff's wife Lois saw them and ran into the bedroom to call the police.

Sieff was in the bathroom getting ready for dinner when the jackal went in and shot him in the face from 3ft away.

He slumped to the floor unconscious and Carlos tried to pull the trigger again to finish him off but the gun jammed and the terrorist had to flee.

By the time the police arrived - just two minutes after they were called - Carlos had disappeared.

Miraculously Sieff survived but Carlos the Jackal went on to be responsible for dozens of deaths on behalf of terrorist group PFLP.

He was involved in a string of terrorist outrages including the seizing of the French embassy in The Hague, the bombing of French trains, throwing a grenade into a Parisian restaurant and bombing an Israeli bank in London.

He also carried out two failed bazooka attacks on El Al aeroplanes at Orly Airport near Paris in 1975.

The jackal also shot dead two French detectives who had tried to arrest him at a house in Paris in the middle of a party.

His largest feat was attacking the Vienna headquarters of OPEC - the organisation of oil-producing states - in 1975 when three people were killed and more than 60 people were taken hostage.

In 1994 he was arrested by French counter-terrorism agents in Sudan. He was charged with the Paris murders of the two policemen and PFLP guerrilla turned French Informant Michel Mouk-harbal in 1975 and sent to La Santé de Paris prison to await trial.

Three years later he was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment by a Paris court. The 58-year-old is currently in France's Clairvaux prison.

He is nicknamed after Frede-rick Forsyth's book The Day of the Jackal - which was said to have been found in his flat by police.

A spokesman for Hamptons in St John's Wood said: "Houses that have something special about them are great because it gives us another selling point.

"Unless it is someone really famous then it won't make any difference to the price but it is a little bit different for us."

susanna.wilkey@hamhigh.co.uk

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