For the second time in just over a year, inmates have used a helicopter to escape from jail in Quebec.
Three men escaped Saturday from the Orsainville Detention Centre near Quebec City with the help of a green-coloured helicopter, Quebec provincial police said.
Audrey-Anne Bilodeau, a police spokeswoman, said the helicopter flew west from the provincial detention centre, perhaps toward Montreal.
"We (are working with) a few partners like the airports of Quebec City and surrounding areas, the military bases, and of course there's a ground search in the event that the helicopter is located," Bilodeau said.
The escapees were identified as Yves Denis, 35, Denis Lefebvre, 53, and Serge Pomerleau, 49.
All three were arrested as part of a major police operation in 2010 called Operation Ecrevisse.
They were being held at the detention centre waiting to stand trial.
Police warned anyone who spots them should not approach them and immediately contact police.
In March 2013, there was a daring escape at St-Jerome prison involving a helicopter where a pilot was forced at gunpoint to fly to the facility on a quiet Sunday afternoon.
Two inmates climbed up a rope ladder into the hovering helicopter and fled.
The two escapees and the two men accused of hijacking the chopper were caught by police in Mont-Tremblant, about 85 kilometres away, within a few hours.