Swiss female prison guard helps Syrian rapist flee

The guard and the rapist are on the run after fleeing jail together in Zurich.

Gil Ronen,

Zurich police (illustration)
Zurich police (illustration)

Swiss police on Tuesday launched a manhunt for a Syrian man convicted of rape, after he fled his jail cell along with a female prison guard.

The two fugitives may already have left the country. The guard helped the prisoner break out of jail in Zurich on Monday night, police said in a statement that was cited by AFP.

The 27-year-old Syrian man had been sentenced to four years in jail for rape.

According to initial police findings, the guard who helped him flee is 32 years old. Her name and nationality were not released.

The two fled the prison together, the statement said, and police launched a manhunt as soon as they learned of the jailbreak.

For years, there have been reports from Europe regarding a sharp rise in sex crimes, which is being attributed to the influx of Muslim migrants. 

Authorities now believe the sex attack epidemic is spreading across Europe.

On New Years' Eve, a series of mass sexual attacks attributed to Muslim migrants took place in Germany, Austria, Finland and Sweden. The most brazen attack took place in Cologne, where over 100 women filed police complaints.

The incidents also reportedly spread to Switzerland, where there were New Year’s Eve sex attacks in Zurich on women “similar to the events in Cologne,” Die Presse newspaper reported.

In those attacks, six women reported being robbed and sexually harassed at a fireworks display, police said. Die Presse added that the women had been attacked by a “crowd of several men with darker skin color.”

Over the summer, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flowed into Europe from Syria, Switzerland expanded its annual quota of asylum-seekers to about 30,000.

In October's parliamentary elections, the right-wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP), already the largest party in parliament, pushed its share of the popular vote to 29%, surpassing its previous record in 2007.