Twenty three prisoners belonging to the Mara or Barrio dies y ocho gang managed to escape from the Marco Aurelio Soto prison in Honduras last week Thursday. However, according to reports from international media houses, information regarding the jailbreak was not publicly announced until two days later on Saturday May 13 by the Director of the National Penitentiary Institute.
Today, the Belize Police Department released the list of names and photos of the escaped prisoners informing the general public that these men are considered dangerous. They are Jonathan Melgar, Osnin Medina, Luis Maradiaga, Rony Montes, Fredy García, Elvin Macoy, Fernando Cornejo, Elías Mendoza, Edwin Mejía, Henry García, Kevin Rodriguez, Jose Silva, Jocsan Zavala, Yony Rodríguez, Jesús Cruz, Santos Flores, Yanuario Canales, Nelson Herrera, Marco Martínez, Lindolfo Escalante, Moisés Torres, Antonio Matute and David Alberto Verde Bonilla.
The inmates had been locked up in the special “Scorpion” unit designed for members of the notorious gang and it is believed that they fled in order to avoid being transferred to maximum security prisons. Further reports indicate that while the circumstances surrounding the escape remain unclear, Head of the prison, Cesar Nájera and several prison guards were temporarily suspended from their post and are currently under investigation.
The Marco Aurelio Soto also known as the Tamara prison is one of the most overpopulated prisons in Honduras, where approximately 17,000 inmates are held in a system designed to hold only 8,000.