Published: Tue, January 26, 2016
U.S. | By Eddie Scott

2 of 3 escaped inmates believed still in region

2 of 3 escaped inmates believed still in region

It's likely someone slipped them blueprints or told them how the bowels of the jail were laid out, he said. The victim survived the attack after being dumped in the desert, Sawyer said.

Sometime after the early-morning headcount on Friday, they apparently cut through half-inch steel bars hidden behind a bed in their unit, forced their way into a plumbing tunnel, and made their way to an unsecured part of the jailhouse roof.

Sheriff Sandra Hutchens addresses the public regarding the recent inmate escape at a news conference on January 24, 2016. There were two head counts conducted, one at 5 a.m. and a second at 8 p.m. Friday, he said. The jail is a maximum-security facility.

It's unclear whether they had any help from the outside or if other inmates were involved in the escape.

"Procedures may have been in place, but were they followed?" Deputies are still searching for the men, who have not been seen since the escape.

All three men were set to go on trial separately for violent crimes.

Jonathan Tieu, Bac Duong, and Hossein Nayeri were all held in Orange County Men's Central Jail awaiting trial for violent, but unrelated, crimes.

A major question for investigators will be how the men were able to plan and execute their flight with such precision, said Kevin Tamez, a managing partner for MPM Group, a Philadelphia-based firm that consults on prison security, management and infrastructure. Authorities do not have extradition agreements with Iran, where Nayeri has family, so, investigators used a ruse to get him to the Czech Republic, which is more cooperative with the USA for extraditing fugitives, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Matt Murphy.

Hossein Nayeri, 37, had been held without bond since September 2014 on charges of kidnapping, torture, aggravated mayhem and burglary.

Tieu faces charges for murder, attempted murder, and shooting at an inhabited dwelling. "We think it's a strong possibility that he may have connected with those fellow gang members in the Vietnamese community".

The priority was finding the men - who are possibly armed and considered risky - but a probe is also underway to see whether the men had any help from inside or outside the Orange County Men's Central Jail. The Bureau of Justice Statistics groups together "escapes" and "AWOL" (Absent Without Leave) incidents to arrive at this total.

"There's no information to indicate they've left Southern California", Sheriff's Lt. Jeff Hallock said. Escapes statewide have been in decline for years, according to data tracked by the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation, plummeting to a low of just 11 cases in 2011. From 2008 to 2012, the last years for which data were available, that average dipped to about 18 escapes annually.

A reward of up to $50,000 has been offered for information leading to the recapture of three "dangerous" inmates who escaped from a jail in Orange County, California, authorities said Sunday. Furthermore, the three clearly had an intimate level of knowledge about the prison's infrastructure, and managed to not accidentally cut open a steam pipe, once again suggesting that they had help in their escape.



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