An Abu Sayyaf member and seven other inmates escaped from the Basilan Provincial Jail in Isabela City early Tuesday, police said.

Among those who escaped is Abu Sayyaf member Said Usman, Isabela City Police chief Superintendent Albert Larubis said.

Usman, a resident of Lantawan, is facing charges of four counts of kidnapping with serious illegal detention, Larubis said.

The other escapees were identified as Akmad Arasani, Obet dela Cruz, Serham Akalun alias Bagio, Benhar Ibrahim, Oliver Tinguha, Mumar Jajuli, and Arajan Dala.

Akalun, Tinguha, and Dala are facing charges for different counts of murder.

Arasani is facing charges of frustrated murder and violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act, Dela Cruz is charged for robbery, Ibrahim for cattle rustling, and Jajuli for illegal drugs.

Larubis said the duty provincial jail guard discovered the jailbreak around 8 a.m., while conducting an accounting of inmates at the facility in Geras, Brgy. Sumagdang.

Investigation indicated that the inmates who escaped were detained at cell no. 2, and managed to bolt out by climbing through the ceiling and jumping to the concrete fence, he said.

Police and jail guards are now conducting operations to recapture the escapees. (John Roson)

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