10 Nov 2010

PNG police yet to begin probe of Mt Hagen inmate shooting

3:33 pm on 10 November 2010

The police in Papua New Guinea say they've not begun to investigate the shooting of six inmates in a prison outbreak as the jail is conducting its own investigation first.

That comes as relatives of the six men who died are reported to be demanding an immediate inquiry.

Jo O'Brien reports

"The Mount Hagen Metropolitian Superintendent John Kale says police officers made initial inquiries after the inmates were shot dead on Friday as guards tried to prevent their escape. But he says Baisu jail is now conducting its own investigation and is expected to present a report to police toward the end of this week. The Superintendent says hospital authorities are also investigating the jail, where three prisoners died and others have become seriously ill with diarrheal diseases. Relatives of those killed in the shooting told the National the prisoners fled because they feared for their lives as the jail failed to address the deteriorating health conditions. They're calling for an immediate investigation, saying the prisoners were unarmed and did not attack the guards. Superintendent Kale says once police have received reports from corrections and health officials, they will investigate and prosecute those at fault."