Couillard: Catching Orsainville escapees number one priority

Philippe Couillard said capturing the three escaped prisoners who escaped from the Orsainville penitentiary by helicopter near Quebec City is the top priority for his government.

Once that is done, he said the province will look at the conditions that allowed the three men to escape in the first place.

The government has to look at "elements like the level of security inside the jail as well as how air traffic is monitored above our institutions," he said.

The three men - Serge Pomerleau, 49, Denis Lefebvre, 53 and Yves Denis, 35 -- are on the SQ's most wanted list. 

The three were arrested on drug trafficking and gangsterism charges, and may face murder charges as well.

Couillard also said that he would be going to Moncton tomorrow to attend the funeral services of the three Mounties who were shot and killed last week, including that of Victoriaville native Dave Ross.

Couillard said he has not yet spoken to the Ross family, but added that he will speak to them tomorrow and extend condolences on behalf of all Quebecers.

"I've spoken also to the Premier of New Brunswick [David Alward] conveying to him our deepest sympathy," he said. "And I expect to be there to share the grief."

Government flags will be at half-staff across the province.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper is also expected at the ceremonies tomorrow. 

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