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Inmates used helicopter to break out of Canadian prison, police say

Police say two inmates at a Canadian prison are back in custody after two of their friends helped them escape by helicopter.
Saint-Jerome, Quebec (CNN/WSYR-TV) - Police say two inmates at a Canadian prison are back in custody after two of their friends helped them escape by helicopter.

The plan to break out of St. Jerome Prison was audacious to say the least. Two men allegedly pretended to be tourists and rented a helicopter.

The helicopter company's owner says the passengers forced the young pilot, at gunpoint, to fly instead to the jail which houses a high security section.

A correctional services manager who oversees the prison had few details to provide about what happened next, except to say the inmates were in the yard at the time.

But witnesses describe seeing a James Bond-like maneuver next.

Two inmates, 36-year-old Benjamin Hudon Barbeau and 33-year-old Danny Provençal, grabbed ropes and were hoisted in the air.

Officials say they landed in a field where everyone got in the helicopter and ordered the pilot to take off again and fly to a hotel.

At the hotel, they moved to a getaway car and a manhunt was underway.

Provincial police say the canine unit and SWAT team were all put to use.

With the help of citizens’ tips and phone calls, they tracked three men down and captured them without incident.

The fourth man, one of the escaped inmates, eventually surrendered.

No one was injured. The pilot was treated for shock, questioned and released.

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