Twenty-five inmates escaped a state prison in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, leaving at least 17 dead as a result, per reports.
The prison is located not far from El Paso, Texas, and it appears the attacks were centered on orchestrating the escape of a Mexican gang leader.
Ten of those who died were prison guards, who were ambushed by gunmen who arrived early n the morning in armored vehicles and began firing inside the prison entrance.
Mexico Security Secretary Rosa Icela Rodríguez identified those involved as being part of the Mexicles gang, adding that the gang is part of the Caborca Cartel. The Mexicles’ leader was among the fugitives, she said.
24 Inmates Escape in Attack on Mexican Prison Near Texas Border
Meanwhile, the soldiers and police who eventually retook control of the prison found 10 “VIP” cells that had large televisions and looked fairly comfortable overall. One of the cells even had a safe filled with cash,” CBS wrote.
Along with that, authorities reportedly found cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin and fentanyl inside the prison. The drugs presumably had been in possession of many of those who ended up escaping.
This particular prison is believed to house about 3,700 inmates, a number that would be well above its maximum capacity of 3,100, according to CBS.
“Extra National Guard forces and the army have been sent to the city to locate and capture the escaped inmates,” Bloomberg wrote. “President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government has been criticized for its security strategy, informally known as ”abrazos, no balazos’ or ‘hugs, not bullets,'”