Holidaymakers who flew to the south of France on a private jet from London have been turned back to the UK.

Reports in France say the 10 tourists from various different nationalities were refused entry at Marseille airport.

They planned to have a holiday on the Côte-d'Azur, despite the coronavirus lockdown banning unnecessary travel.

France has been under total lockdown since March 17, but the wealthy travellers refused to follow the rules.

Police said that seven men and three women arrived at Marseille-Provence airport on board a private jet from London last Saturday.

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The men were aged between 40 and 50, while their female companions were between 24 and 27 years old.

After border police and air transport gendarmerie refused to let them stay, they were forced to turn around.

French media outlet BFMTV reports that the man who planned the trip is a Croatian national who works in finance and real estate.

Marseille-Provence airport
The 10 travellers landed at Marseille-Provence airport in the south of France

He rented a private jet in London before booking a luxury villa in Cannes on the south coast of France.

Currently, commercial flights are greatly reduced at airports in France in response to the Covid-19 crisis, and authorities are "looking closely" at any air travel, particularly those by rich clients trying to evade the lockdown in private jets.

None of the travellers are believed to be British but instead hold Croatian, German, French, Romanian and Ukrainian nationality.

A border police spokesperson said: "Crossing borders is conditioned on a legitimate or compelling reason.

"It can be a professional with proof or medical staff who are coming in for reinforcement.

"The rules are similar to those for travel exemptions on the French territory in the context of containment."

Reports say the pilot had no valid reason for travel, and the 10 travellers were asked to leave but escaped a fine as "legally they did not enter the territory".

French Gendarme
French police said the 10 were trying to escape the lockdown on the Côte-d'Azur

According to police, nine of the rich tourists took the same private jet back to London, while one hired a separate private plane and flew to Germany.

France has been one of the worst-affected countries in the world by the coronavirus pandemic, with almost 118,000 confirmed cases and 12,210 deaths.

Sadly, this isn't the first time that Europe's super-rich have shown they won't follow the same rules as everyone else during a time of global crisis.

Last week, Russian rich kids flouted the coronavirus lockdown by flaunting their expensive travel and luxurious lifestyles.