21 Jan 2009

Police search for third prisoner on run

7:06 pm on 21 January 2009

Police are searching for another prisoner who escaped while working outside the main fence at Paremoremo, in Auckland.

It is the third escape by prisoners in the North Island over the past week.

North Shore Police say Arai Whakaari Hema, 30, is a low security inmate but are warning the public not to approach him.

Police began searching for Hema on Wednesday afternoon after he went missing from a work party outside the prison's main perimeter.

A police dog unit tracked Hema to a nearby road where he may have been picked up by a waiting vehicle.

Hema is described as 1.75 metres tall, and was wearing work boots, denim shorts and a high visibility yellow jacket with no sleeves.

Meanwhile, police are still searching for three prisoners who escaped from a Waikato police van transporting them to Waikeria Prison on Monday.

On 15 January, two prisoners broke out of a police van at Palmerston North District Court.