NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — There was a scare at Newark Liberty International Airport on Tuesday as authorities scrambled to find an escaped prisoner.

The man was in the custody of Customs and Border Protection when he got away, leading to a brief traffic disruption at Terminal C.

Dozens of officers from Port Authority, the sheriff’s office and border protection were involved in the search.

Sources tell CBS2 the man, a U.S. citizen, was trying to leave the country even though he had been indicted and was prohibited from leaving New York State pending a trial. He was taken to Terminal C for processing around 11:30 a.m. when he asked to use the bathroom. That is when the man tried to escape into the ceiling.

CBS2’s Christina Fan saw agents walking out of the terminal with saws and a ladder, tools they used to cut the suspect out of the ventilation system after an officer found him hiding a story above.

He was eventually caught and turned over to Homeland Security for federal prosecution.

There were some traffic disruptions to terminal C, but everything is operating normally now.


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