Greek prisoners missing after gunmen storm jail

Police search ground outside the prison near Trikala, Greece, 23 March Police searched the area around the prison on Saturday

Related Stories

Eleven inmates are missing and two guards injured after gunmen attacked a Greek prison, less than a week after a hostage siege at a different jail.

The gunmen drove up to the prison near Trikala, 320km (200 miles) north-west of Athens, and reportedly attacked a tower with firearms and grenades.

Prisoners appear to have then used ropes to climb down from the tower.

A stand-off continued all night at the jail, only ending at dawn when commandos restored control.

Police set up roadblocks and were using a helicopter to search for the inmates and their accomplices.

According to Greek media, all 11 missing prisoners are Albanians serving sentences for robbery and theft.

Police found 400-500 bullet casings and traces of six grenade blasts after the attack, which began on Friday evening, the Greek news website Kathimerini reports.

BBC map

Estimates of the number of attackers vary between six and 16.

Last Sunday, convicted Albanian killer and two-time jail escapee Alket Rizaj surrendered at Malandrino prison, further south, after taking six hostages in a new attempt to break out.

During the drama, photos of the hostages, who appeared to be mostly prison guards, were sent to media by mobile phone.

Greek prisons are suffering from serious overcrowding and staff shortages as the country struggles with the financial crisis which began in late 2008, AP news agency notes.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Europe stories


Features & Analysis

  • Prostitute in red light district in Seoul, South KoreaSex for soldiers

    How Korea helped prostitutes work near US military bases

  • LuckyDumped

    The rubbish collector left on the scrap heap as his city cleans up

  • Walmart employees and supporters block off a major intersection near the Walton Family Foundation to stage a protest calling for $15 an hour and consistent full-time work in downtown Washington October 16, 2014. Black mark

    Wal-Mart workers revolt against the annual shopping bonanza

  • Jennifer Lawrence in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1More than 'Games'

    Fact and fiction blur in Mockingjay film.

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • UnderwaterHidden depths

    How do you explore the bottom of the ocean? BBC Future finds out


  • All-inclusive holidaysThe Travel Show Watch

    With all-inclusive holidays seeing a resurgence are local trades missing out to big resorts?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.