About 200 inmates break out of Indonesian jail

A plainclothes policeman detains a prisoner who escaped from Sialang Bungkuk prison

Indonesian authorities have been hunting around 200 prisoners who broke out from an overcrowded jail on Sumatra island.

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

The inmates escaped the prison in protest at the overcapacity problem in Sialang Bungkuk Penitentiary, which has only 361 cells to accommodate 1,800 inmates.

A plainclothes policeman (left) detains a prisoner who escaped from the Sialang Bungkuk jail in Pekanbaru on Indonesia's Sumatra island, on Friday. As officials pursued the inmates, a police officer dressed in black riot gear was seen holding a man in a headlock.

When this failed, they then broke through a wire fence guarded by only a few officers, director general of prisons I Wayan Dusak said.

"About 200 escaped, but at least 77 people have been recaptured", local police spokesman Guntur Aryo Tejo said.




Some surrendered while others were captured by police or residents, Tejo said. Hundreds of police and soldiers were deployed to search for some scores of inmates who escaped Friday from the overcrowded prison on Sumatra island.

Most of those recaptured had been caught around Pekanbaru.

Inmates had accused some guards of being violent and complained about their treatment in the jail, Mr Siagian told Metro TV.

Jailbreaks are common in Indonesia where overcrowding has become a significant problem in prisons that are struggling to cope with poor funding and an influx of people arrested under a war on drugs.

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

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