A Monaco mother was approached in the Fontvieille Commercial Centre while shopping with her two children on Saturday by an older grey-haired woman who said, in English: “The children are coming with me.”

Shocked, she left immediately with her children and later reported the incident to the police.

She was told that cameras would be checked and that the would-be kidnapper was likely known to them and was believed to be a homeless person from the Nice area. The Sûreté Publique said that anyone approached by the individual should immediately call 17 and, if possible, take a photograph.