Photo: 10 Days After Mexican Prison Break, 123 Inmates Still Loose
All but eight of the 131 inmates who escaped 10 days ago from a prison in the northern border city of Piedras Negras remain on the loose, Mexican authorities said.
Seven of the fugitives have been apprehended, while the eighth died in a confrontation with police, the Coahuila state government said.
Three escapees convicted of federal offenses were apprehended on Wednesday in the southeastern part of Coahuila after being spotted at a gas station.
The Sept. 17 prison break in Piedras Negras, just across the border from Eagle Pass, Texas, was the biggest in Mexico since Dec. 17, 2010, when 141 inmates escaped from a penitentiary in Nuevo Laredo, which sets next to Laredo, Texas.
After initially saying the Piedras Negras escapees left through a tunnel, authorities later acknowledged that the inmates simply walked out the prison gate.
The Los Zetas drug cartel organized the mass breakout, according to officials.
The Zetas, originally a band of army deserters working as hired guns for the Gulf cartel, went into the drug business for themselves several years ago and have become embroiled in vicious turf battles with their former partners and other criminal outfits.