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Mexican police shut down bar for prison inmates

It's closing time for a bar that served beer, tequila and vodka to inmates at a prison in northern Mexico.

Mexico prison tequila 05 25 11Enlarge
Tequila for sale in a store in Mexico. Inmates at a prison in Chihuahua state, northern Mexico, had access to a bar that served tequila, beer and vodka. (PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

Police have discovered a well-stocked bar at a prison in northern Mexico that served booze to inmates and even had billiard tables for prisoners to play pool or snooker.

The bar reportedly served beer, tequila and vodka to prisoners, The Associated Press reports. But since the discovery of the bar, a prison director has been fired and may face charges, while several low-level guards are under investigation.

Federal police discovered the bar this week at a low-security prison in Chihuahua city, capital of Chihuahua state. Authorities confiscated 200 cans of beer, 12 bottles of tequila and 20 bottles of vodka, the AP reports.

Agence France-Presse reports that the bar was also found to have marijuana, heroin and firearms, as well as two billiard tables.

It is not known how prisoners managed to conceal the bar from authorities, or how they procured the alcohol and billiard tables.

A spokesman for Chihuahua state's prosecutor for prisons told the AP that the deputy director of the prison where the bar was discovered has been fired. Spokesman Jorge Chaires said Wednesday that guards at the low-security prison are being investigated for their knowledge of the bar.

Mexico’s jails are notoriously overpopulated and there are often riots and mass breakouts, sometimes carried out with the help of corrupt guards, AFP reports.

In December, 141 inmates escaped from a state prison in Nuevo Laredo, northern Mexico, in a breakout that authorities said was likely helped by prison staff. The mass escape was only a few months after 85 inmates used a ladder to escape from a prison in the border city of Reyno.

Meanwhile, 17 inmates have recently escaped from another prison in northern Mexico, apparently by using a tunnel they had dug from a laundry room, the AP reports.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/mexico/110525/mexico-chihuahua-prison-bar-beer-tequila-vodka-drunk-inmates