Prison guards “took over €100,000 to look the other way”, says jailbreak fugitive

Jailbreak fugitive Joaquim Bitton Matos continues to cause havoc over social media. After posing with an M4 rifle on Facebook and boasting that the authorities could never find him (click here), he has now been conversing with journalists – allegedly telling them that prison guards at Caxias jail, near Lisbon, were complicit in his escape seven weeks ago.

According to reports, Matos has given reporters the names of four prison guards who not only took bribes to look the other way, but smuggled “special material” into cells to enable Matos and two Chileans to make their high-profile escapes.

Both Chileans were later detained in Spain, but Matos has given authorities the slip.

According to RTP, he insists he is still in the country – though PJ investigators apparently doubt this.

Nonetheless, everything is being done to try and discover the location from which “Jeki Matos” is holding forth online.

The Facebook texts and conversations he has been having will be traceable, a PJ source told RTP, while Correio da Manhã claims to have spoken with Matos by telephone, and says he has vowed to go on taunting the authorities with his cheeky posts.

In a text with RTP he explains he “suffered a lot” in prison, and now it’s time for authorities “to pay”.

As for the claims about corrupt prison guards, RTP says that an internal inquiry will now be going ahead, in tandem with the PJ.

Meantime, Matos says he is thoroughly enjoying his new-found freedom, and “will only be caught if I want to be”.

What is he doing for food, CM asked him? “I go shopping normally”, was his answer.

According to CM, Matos is “close to the frontier with Spain” (which narrows the search area down to around 1,214 kms).

Matos was jailed in November 2015 and is accused, says RTP, of crimes ranging from criminal association, drug trafficking, extortion, GBH, money-laundering, robberies and thefts.

He was taken into preventive custody on suspicion of being part of a group that targeted gamblers as they left casinos.

According to RTP, Matos considers his months in preventive custody were “unjust”.

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PHOTO: From Jeki Matos’ Facebook photos, suggesting his “suffering” was being held in jail without the benefit of a trial. In English, the words translate: “nobody should be considered guilty until condemned in court”