07/19/11— The Federal Government of Mexico stated on Friday that due to the corruption of prison authorities in Tamaulipas and their “avoidance of systematic control measures,” more than 400 inmates have been able to escape from a number of Tamaulipas-based prisons between January 2010 and March 2011. Within these 15 months, the Interior Ministry (Secretaría de Gobernación, Segob) reports that 84 such incidents occurred in 5 different prisons. The most recent escape took place on Friday, when 59 inmates fled from the Sanctions Enforcement Center in Nuevo Laredo, during which 7 inmates were killed in the attempt. As reported in La Crónica de Hoy, two prison breaks also occurred in May 2011 in Reynosa, Tamaulipas during which 14 prisoners escaped from each of the penitentiaries. In December 2010, a prison in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas had 141 inmates escape, while another 85 and 12 escaped from a Reynosa prison in September and July 2010, respectively, and 41 successfully fled from a Matamoros prison in March 2010.
In response to the increasing number of prison breaks, the Federal Executive stated that it is “unacceptable” and has demanded a thorough investigation, arguing that this will “bring justice to the public servants who have betrayed their public service duties.” For its part, Segob added that “these events are not only threatening the safety of [Mexican] communities, they are also generating impunity and undermining the work of authorities committed to their work.” As such, the government announced that the Mexican army and the Federal Police will strengthen surveillance outside of the prison and that they will assist in locating and re-arresting the 59 prisoners who escaped on Friday.