Hunt for 100 convicts after jailbreak in Sumatra

MEDAN (Indonesia) • At least 100 prisoners are on the run from an Indonesian jail, the authorities said yesterday, after the South-east Asian nation's second mass prison escape in less than a week.

Prisoners fled from the jail for narcotics convicts in North Sumatra province yesterday after starting a fire in response to complaints about the treatment of a fellow prisoner, the authorities said.

"They were angry and burned prison officers' motorbikes," said resident Solden, who, like many Indonesians, goes by one name.

Hundreds of inmates initially escaped from the detention centre, but most were soon recaptured. At least 100 others are still at large.

"They should surrender and serve the remainder of their sentences," North Sumatra police chief Agus Andrianto said. "Running away won't solve the problem - it will only create more problems."

Yesterday's jailbreak comes after more than 100 inmates escaped last Saturday from another jail in Sumatra following a riot that broke out after guards beat several inmates who were caught using methamphetamine. Three detainees suffered stab wounds and a policeman was shot.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 17, 2019, with the headline 'Hunt for 100 convicts after jailbreak in Sumatra'. Print Edition | Subscribe