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THE WORLD | IN BRIEF / COLOMBIA

Police Search for 9 in Bogota Prison Break

June 26, 2001|From Times Wire Reports

Colombian police were searching for 98 inmates, including 19 Marxist guerrillas, who escaped from a high-security prison in the capital, Bogota, by blasting a hole in a wall.

The jailbreak Saturday--one of the biggest in the nation's history--began when about 30 rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, set off a bomb along a wall of La Picota prison.

Guards killed five prisoners and wounded 12 others who had hurled grenades and opened fire as they sprinted to freedom.

Among the escapees were 19 FARC rebels, said Fabio Campo, director of the National Penitentiary and Prison Institute.

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