13 drug detainees escape in Pampanga jailbreak

MANILA, Philippines – Thirteen detainees facing drug charges escaped from jail on Sunday, February 26, the latest in a series of prison breaks in the country, authorities said.

The 13 slipped out of the jail in a police camp in San Fernando City, Pampanga before dawn, said Derrick Arnold Carreon, spokesman for the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

"They sawed through the bars of the metal grill," he told Agence France-Presse, adding an investigation was underway to find out how they got the saw.

The Philippines has frequently suffered mass escapes from prisons which are usually overcrowded, poorly maintained, and inadequately guarded.

In the country's biggest jailbreak, more than 150 inmates escaped the North Cotabato District Jail in Kidapawan City last January after about a hundred gunmen stormed the facility.

In August 2016 members of a Muslim extremist group that pledges allegiance to the Islamic State group stormed a jail in the south and broke out 23 inmates. – Rappler.com