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CANADA PRISON ESCAPE

Canadian authorities say two Quebec prison inmates have made a daring broad daylight escape, climbing a rope into a hovering helicopter.

Police said late Sunday they have arrested at least three people, including one of the inmates, in connection with the escape. Police said they have surrounded the second fugitive. It was not immediately clear where the police found the escapees.

Canada's The Globe and Mail newspaper reports the helicopter was hijacked Sunday afternoon from a tour company in Mont-Tremblant by two men posing as tourists.

Once the helicopter was aloft, the men held a gun on the pilot, ordering him to fly to St. Jerome, 60 kilometers northwest of Montreal where the inmates climbed aboard the aircraft.



Police have identified the prisoners as Benjamin Hudon-Barbeau, who is 36 and Danny Provencal who is 33.

While the police were pursuing the escapees, a man identifying himself as Hudon-Barbeau began calling media outlets, saying he would rather kill himself than return to prison.

Authorities say when the police found the helicopter in Mont-Tremblant, 85 kilometers away from the prison, the inmates had already escaped, but the pilot remained. Officials say the pilot was taken to the hospital where police say he will be questioned.

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