Four Cook Islands prisoners have been charged with escape from custody.
The Cook Islands News says the police arrested them and charged them in Arorangi prison.
During interviews, the inmates admitted escaping from the prison at night to carry out criminal activities in the community before sneaking into prison again before day break.
The newspaper says the revelation by prisoners in court is expected to embarrass the government and the prison authorities.
The arrests are also likely to raise question about how security is managed and maintained in the country's only prison.