13 Jan 2010

PNG top criminal escapes from Port Moresby jail

4:11 pm on 13 January 2010

Papua New Guinea's most dangerous criminal has escaped from jail in a mass breakout, only days before the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrives in the country.

William Kapris fled Port Moresby's Bomana prison in a truck after a warder was taken hostage and a woman posing as a lawyer pulled a gun on guards.

A total of 12 prisoners escaped.

Kapris has been accused of a string of high-profile bank robberies, rape, a plane hijacking and the alleged murder of a police officer.

Before being captured in 2008 he had been on the run for eight years after escaping police detention while convalescing in hospital.

Last year, Australian police assisting PNG police with a kidnapping intercepted mobile telephone calls to Kapris, who allegedly masterminded the kidnapping from his Bomana cell.