The Zeta cartel is suspected to have orchestrated the break to replenish their ranks after members were arrested or killed during a deadly turf war with the rival Gulf cartel.
AP reports that a judge has ordered the detention of the prison director, two top aides and 13 other prison employees after one-fifth of the prison population was able to escape into Piedras Negras, across the border from Eagle Pass, Texas.
“In the past six years, more than 1,000 inmates have escaped from state prisons. From the federal prisons, not one,” Mexican President Felipe Calderon tweeted Tuesday.
Officials originally said that 132 inmates had escaped but found three inmates hiding in another part of the prison.
About 5,000 members of the federal police, army and navy have launched a manhunt in northern Mexico.
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