Indonesia: Most inmates recaptured after prison break

Prisoners broke out of a jail in the city of Pekanbaru after they were let out of their cells for Friday prayers.

    Indonesia: Most inmates recaptured after prison break
    The male-only prison has a capacity of 300 people but was holding 1,870 inmates, with only five guards and a porter on duty [EPA]

    Indonesian security forces have rounded up most of the inmates who escaped during a mass breakout from an overcrowded prison on Sumatra island, police said.

    About 200 inmates broke out of the jail in Pekanbaru, on Sumatra island, after they were let out of their cells to pray on Friday.

    Almost 80 were quickly recaptured after the incident, and on Saturday the majority had been rounded up, officials said.

    "So far, 171 inmates have been recaptured or surrendered willingly, we are still unable to determine the exact number of the inmates who escaped," local police spokesman Guntur Aryo Tejo told AFP news agency.

    Most prisoners were recaptured while still near Pekanbaru [EPA]

    Amateur footage broadcast on local TV stations showed scores of men, some wearing sarongs, scurrying through the gates of the Sialang Bungkuk prison on Friday, with no sign of officials in pursuit.

    Most prisoners were recaptured while still near Pekanbaru.

    Dozens of the escaped inmates headed directly to another prison where they handed themselves in.

    Tejo said the inmates told the police they decided to escape due to inhumane conditions in the prison.

    The male-only prison has a capacity of 300 people but was holding 1,870 inmates, with only five guards and a porter on duty at any one time, said director general of prisons, I Wayan Dusak.

    "They also complained about unfair treatment by the prison guards," Tejo said.

    READ MORE: Indonesia - Manhunt under way after mass jailbreak

    More than a thousand inmates who did not escape the prison were refusing to return to their cells unless the head guard was replaced.

    Jailbreaks are common in Indonesia, where inmates are held in often unsanitary conditions at overcrowded prisons.

    There was a spate of breakouts in 2013, including one where about 150 prisoners - including "terror" convicts - escaped from a jail on western Sumatra island.

    SOURCE: News agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Thou Shalt Not Kill: Israel's Hilltop Youth

    Thou Shalt Not Kill: Israel's Hilltop Youth

    Meet the hardline group willing to do anything, including going against their government, to claim land for Israel.