Ahead of lockdown, hundreds of inmates broke out of four Brazilian prisons in Sao Paolo on Monday, the day before their day-release programme was suspended, according to Reuters.
Sao Paolo’s state prison authority said in a statement that 174 inmates have already been recaptured. Brazilian media reported that as many as 1,000 inmates had fled from four jails – Mongaguá, Tremembé, Porto Feliz and Mirandópolis.
A video on social media shows the inmates fleeing prison, but Reuters was unable to verify the location:
BREAKING: More than 1,350 inmates escape from prisons in São Paulo after tensions over coronavirus restrictions; several guards being held hostage – EFE pic.twitter.com/cbibJzaXjk
— BNO News (@BNONews) March 17, 2020
In addition to that, the suspension was necessary because 34,000 convicts would be returning to jail, with high probability of being infected which could lead to them spreading the virus in the penitentiary. It is also worth mentioning that law enforcement is “taking care of the situation.”
Sao Paolo state is home to the First Capital Command, Brazil’s most powerful prison gang that is expanding quickly across the country and neighbouring nations.
This makes violent prison riots and breakouts common in Brazil’s overpopulated prisons.
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Remember to keep clean and practice social distancing.