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Not Exactly Escape from Alcatraz

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Not Exactly Escape from Alcatraz

Photo: Ed Gregory.

An inmate who escaped from prison in Akureyri, North Iceland yesterday afternoon was recaptured outside a movie theater in the city center later that evening, reports RÚV.

The incident occurred about 4:15pm yesterday. The inmate who is in his thirties had been trusted to work in the prison garden, as he had served a large part of his sentence and was already enjoying day leave privileges. However, when the inmate found himself temporarily unobserved in the garden yesterday, he took the opportunity to abscond.

The escapee was not considered dangerous, according to RÚV sources. After a fairly extensive search by the Akureyri police force, the inmate was found last night outside Borgarbío cinema in the center of Akureyri and was returned to prison just before 11pm. The man was apparently missing from prison for nearly eight hours in all, and not one hour as had initially been reported by the police in Akureyri.

Akureyri Prison Warden Guðmundur Gíslason said that prison escapes are treated as a serious offense. Prisoners who violate the rules in such a way always face disciplinary measures.

Guðmundur explained that absconding in this way could affect the man’s chances for parole and pointed out that such a violation has both short- and long-term consequences. “Generally, when prisoners break the rules, they can lose various privileges.”

Article 45 of the Execution of Sentences Act No. 49 states that prisoners who escape from prison while serving sentences or being held on remand can lose day leave privileges for at least two years.

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