At least 22 prisoners from the 18th Street Gang – otherwise known as Barrio 18 – escaped a military-guarded prison in Honduras.
Prison officials at the Marco Aurelio Soto prison were not exactly sure when the escape happened, but believed it to be sometime during the week of May 8, TeleSUR reported.
“Prisoners were locked up in the special ‘Scorpion’ unit for members of the notorious Barrio 18 gang, one of the strongest organized crime groups in Central America,” TeleSUR noted.
Officials did not realize that the prisoners had escaped until days later when custodians noticed they were gone.
Rosa Gudiel, the head of the National Penitentiary Institute, said in a news conference that the escape happened because the prisoners wanted to avoid going to a new facility.
“The prisoners fled because arrangements are being made to transfer them to new, high-security jails and they don’t want to go to those places,” Gudiel said.
Due to previous prison breaks, Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez ordered the military to guard the country’s largest prisons.
Marco Aurelio Soto prison, located just north of Honduras’ capital city of Tegucigalpa, is reportedly the country’s most over-populated prison with 17,000 inmates occupying a space designed to house 8,000.
Prison officials keep Barrio 18 gang members in special facilities that are equipped to handle violence and criminal activities common among prison gangs.
Ryan Saavedra is a contributor for Breitbart Texas and can be found on Twitter at @RealSaavedra.