25 May 2010

Vanuatu police capture escaped inmate Shem

1:36 pm on 25 May 2010

Vanuatu police have confirmed they've recaptured an escaped prisoner, Paul Shem, who's been on the run since February last year.

Our correspondent reports that he was caught by police while drinking kava at a nakamal.

Shem is thought to have been living during his escape within Port Vila city and had evaded capture by disguising himself as a woman.

Police were strongly criticised for their apparent lack of effort to find Shem in a Coroner's Report into the death in custody of another of the recaptured prisoners, John Bule.

That report, by Justice Nevin Dawson, called for action to find both the killers of Mr Bule and solve the mystery of Paul Shem.

Meanwhile three men from a group of six, which escaped from the Port Vila jail, dubbed Container City, earlier this month, have surrendered to police.

The Daily Post newspaper reports that all six had earlier met with MP Ralph Regenvanu and complained about the conditions in the new jail facilities.