x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Two inmates, officer charged in prison break

The prisoners made their way to station's roof, then waited hours before climbing down on ropes made of bed sheets, prosecutors say.

DUBAI // Two unemployed men escaped Al Muraqqabat police station after breaking onto the station's roof and climbing down on makeshift ropes, thanks to an inattentive guard, a court heard this morning.

The inmates ES, 46, an Iranian, and JQ, 29, an Iraqi, told the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance they did not, along with other detainees, escape using a weapon or cause Dh2,000 in damage to public property.

MA, 58-year-old Yemeni policeman, was charged with negligence.

Records said that about 6pm on December 18, 2010, ES, JQ and two others were taken to the phone booths at the police station to make their daily calls.

Prosecutors said MA did not notice as the men took nearby stairs up to the door to the station's roof, then broke open the door with a metal bar taken from a bed in their detention cell.

The men were hiding bed sheets under their clothes. They ripped the sheets into long pieces, tied them together with some electrical wires they found on the roof, and climbed down to the ground after waiting nearly six hours, prosecutors said.

The two men then hid in an abandoned house behind Al Hamriyah post office. When arrested about 10 days later, the two resisted police, and and officers fired guns at them, but there were no injuries, records show.

Nearly Dh1,400 was found with the men, who confessed that they stole it from restaurants and grocery stores in the area, prosecutors said.

An electric saw, ropes and a screwdriver were found in the abandoned house.

The next hearing will be on June 28.

salamir@thenational.ae