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Ecuadorean prison guards claim poor working conditions

Quito, Jun 11 (Prensa Latina) The Ecuadorean Association of Penitentiary Servants denounced on Tuesday that their prison guards work without lethal weapons, with expired vests and without food.

The claim took place after a shooting on Monday in the Pablo Arturo Suarez hospital, located in the north of this capital, which left an escaped prisoner and two guards injured.

“Ecuador needs prison security to be raised to another level,” Carlos Ordoñez, representative of the Association of Penitentiary Servants demanded at a press conference on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Paul Sanchez, lawyer of the association, referred to a court ruling in January 2024, in which the justice ordered the National Service of Attention to Persons Deprived of Liberty (SNAI), to improve working and security conditions in the prison system.

Regarding Monday’s shooting, Sanchez pointed out that the “van was not armored” and that in spite of this, it was used to transport the inmates to the capital’s hospital.

After the incidents, the Attorney General’s Office initiated an investigation against the officers for possible complicity. However, the Association reacted and assured that the responsibility does not fall on them, in their opinion there is a leak of information.

Monday’s incident occurred when three inmates were being taken to the health center for treatment and one of them managed to escape amid the gunfire.

Local sources indicate that the escaped prisoner was identified as Jairo Zambrano, who has open processes for drug trafficking, robbery, organized crime and homicide.