Piedras Negras Prison Break: 3 Captured, 129 Still on the Run
Sep 18, 2012 at 12:04 PM CST
Sep 18, 2012
Mexican authorities are blocking roads leading to the United States after 132 inmates escaped from a prison in Piedras Negras, across Eagle Pass, 125 miles NW of Laredo. As of Tuesday, 3 have been captured, all women who were hiding in an area for visitors at the prison.
The prison break occurred Monday afternoon. Officials say the inmates were able to escape the social rehabilitation center, a minimum-level style facility, by burrowing through a seven-foot long tunnel, one by one. The escapees then cut through a chain-link fence and ran through an empty lot.
Local and federal authorities are searching for the inmates and police have set up blockades on roads leading to the U.S./Mexico border. In a statement from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, they say: "U.S. Customs and Border Protection is cognizant of the prison break situation in Piedras Negras, Mexico and has protocols in place to respond to any contingency."
Along our border, security has been heightened in case any of the escapees try to make it down to Nuevo Laredo or into the U.S. side. Local Webb County Sheriff officials tell us they were informed of the escape late Monday afternoon and all security protocols were put in place. "We are precautionary in that security; so, we do man-up the personnel out in the field and so do federal agencies like BP and CBP. So the first thing we do is have those meetings so we can disseminate those officers where they need to be" says Pete Arredondo, Webb County Sheriff Asst. Chief.
Mexican officials have detained two prison employees for investigation. A $15,000 reward has been offered for information leading to the capture of the prisoners.