Camp Vicente Lim, Laguna: Twelve inmates at Malvar Police jail in Batangas bolted at dawn on Monday by cutting the steel bars of the 10-foot high ventilation window of the detention cell.
Inspector Hazel Lumaang, Batangas Police Public Information Office chief, identified the escapees as Diego Baes Barola, Melvin Tacia Ona, Jerald Estrella Rivo, Leodegario Silva Lara Jr., John Raniel Hiwatig Castillo, Arvie Santillan Villegas, El King Paulino Leonida, Carissa May Cauilan Salagan, Noel Garcia Malpas, Artemio Joloan Castillo and Moris Rap Publico–all facing illegal drug cases–and Freddie Custodio, who is charged with murder.
Initial investigation showed that the detainees cut the iron bars using a steel saw and tied blankets to get out through the ventilation window.
A Special Investigation Task Group to probe the incident has been created while a manhunt for the recapture of the escapees as well as a 24-hour lockdown (checkpoints) in the province were immediately ordered.
Meanwhile, Senior Supt. Leopoldo Cabanag, acting police provincial director, has ordered the removal of Senior Insp. Alberto Fabregas, chief of police of Malvar Municipal Police Station, including three other personnel.
Authorities enjoined the public to provide information that will result in the recapture of the escapees by contacting 0915-336-6396.