Lille, France - Three foreign detainees escaped in classic fashion from a French prison overnight on Wednesday - sawing through the bars of their cell and escaping out of window with bedsheets, a prosecutor said.
"After sawing through the bars, they used sheets and ropes to escape" from the prison in Amiens in northern France, said local prosecutor Bernard Farret.
The guards noticed the men - two from Moldova and one from Romania - were missing shortly after, he added.
One had been serving a sentence for aggravated theft since January and was not due for release until at least 2018.
Another had been in provisional detention since June for fraud, and the third arrived at the prison in October was subject to an extradition request for rape, the prosecutor said.
The prosecutor said police had been mobilised for the manhunt.