Police in Papua New Guinea say criminals in Milne Bay province have burned down several buildings and killed one officer.
The latest bout of violence to strike the provincial capital, Alotau, has been linked to the notorious prison escapee Tommy Baker.
George Bayagau, the Alotau police chief, says seven police houses were torched by heavily armed criminals on Wednesday night.
A local supermarket was also raided and an ATM stolen.
Mr Bayagau told the Post Courier several police officers were wounded and one killed in a shootout this morning.
There are unconfirmed reports that a lawyer and two of the criminals were also killed in the confrontation.
The police say Tommy Baker's gang is suspected to behind a string of violent armed robberies in Alotau over the last 18 months.