Posted By Staff Reporter
A JOINT operation will be carried out between the police and Correctional Services today to recapture the 33 prisoners who are on the run after walking out of the Baisu jail in Western Highlands Province in the early hours of Wednesday.
The walkout was the result of armed men cutting the jail’s perimeter fence and accessing the prison grounds in an attempt to free a lone prisoner. In the process, they released 33 high-risk prisoners and shot a warder in the leg.
Assistant police commissioner divisional commander for Highlands region Teddy Tei said yesterday that investigations were continuing into the breakout.
He said from intial information they received, the armed men had cut through the fence of the prison at 3am on Wednesday to free an accomplice.
"In the process they opened a cell block with 33 prisoners who walked to their freedom. Five CS officers who were on duty were overpowered by the rascals," Mr Tei said.
"The rascals were armed with high-powered weapons while the CS officers had only two guns, this enabled the men to simply walk in and shoot a guard in the leg, and shot off the locks to open the cells."
The 33 prisoners were all remandees, awaiting National Court appearances and decisions for various serious offences.
Mr Tei said as soon as word of the breakout reached the police, investigations were carried out and police were in the Dei council hunting the escapees.
He urged the public in the Western Highlands and neighbouring provinces to be on the lookout for the prisoners.
"Due to the notoriety of the prisoners, I am urging the public in the province to be on the lookout," he said.
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