12:21 GMT03 August 2021
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    New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the two prisoners' escape from a maximum security facility was sophisticated and encompassed drilling through steel walls and pipes.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The two prisoners' escape from a maximum security facility earlier in the day was sophisticated and elaborate, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a televised press conference Saturday.

    State Police launched a manhunt for Richard Matt, 48, and David Sweat, 34, who had been serving time on murder charges in Clinton Correctional Facility.

    "We went back and pieced together what they did: it was elaborate, it was sophisticated, it encompassed drilling through steel walls and steel pipes," Cuomo said.

    He spoke after touring the prisoners' cell and retracing their steps from the facility in Dannemora, where Matt and Sweat were discovered missing early Saturday during a morning bed check.

    Cuomo said power tools were suggested to have been used in Matt and Sweat's escape, and that their "point of exit" was a nearby manhole cover connected to a "series of tunnels."

    Over 200 local, state and federal police officers, including helicopters and K-9 units, are involved in the ongoing manhunt for the escapees, State Police Troop B Commander, Major Charles Guess, said at the conference.

    Roadblocks had also been set up in the small Clinton County village near the Canadian border, as officials pledged that "no stone will be left unturned" in the ongoing investigation.

    Matt is serving a sentence of 25 years for kidnapping a man and beating him to death, while Sweat was convicted of first degree murder of a sheriff's deputy and is serving a life sentence without parole.

    The two inmates are considered dangerous to the public.


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