Over 170 fugitives escape in Haitian mass prison break

Police set up checkpoints on roads leading from Arcahaie prison and detained several people without identity cards.

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

​Local authorities have launched a manhunt in the coastal town of Arcahaie, located north of Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince.

Some 174 fugitives escaped from a northern Haitian prison after killing a security guard, officials said on Saturday.

​They added that local authorities have launched a manhunt in the coastal town of Arcahaie, located north of capital Port-au-Prince, with support from UN peacekeepers.

Haiti's minister of justice, Camille Edouard Junior, said one prisoner died after falling off a wall and hitting his head during the escape from Arcahaie prison.

"One guard was killed during the incident," Edouard Junior told Reuters.

"Three prisoner were wounded, including one who died as a consequence of his wounds."

Police set up checkpoints on roads leading from the prison and detained several people without identity cards, a Reuters witness said. However, the 266 inmates of Arcahaie prison do not wear uniforms, making it easier for escapees to mingle outside.

Eleven inmates were caught during the break, which took place during a period when some were bathing, officials said, adding the inmates broke into an area used by the guards and stole at least five rifles among other weapons.

The US embassy in Haiti issued a security message about "a violent prison break in Arcahaie," and advised its citizens to avoid the area.

Source: 
Reuters