Up to 150 inmates escaped from the high security prison in Khoni, western Georgia, Justice Minister, Nika Gvaramia, said at a press conference on August 14.
The mass jailbreak took place on August 12, but it was only reported two days later.
“You know that during this tense period the prisons were not guarded by special purpose units as these troops were involved in the military conflict,” Gvaramia said. “Only a small contingent was left there [to guard the prison].”
He said that the law enforcement agencies recaptured up to 50 inmates. One inmate was killed, he said, and four other wounded.
Gvaramia said that the authorities were not able to use helicopters in search operations, because of the presence of Russian forces on the Georgian territory.
He called on the inmates to return back “voluntarily” pledging to mitigate their punishment.