Coquitlam RCMP have released two photos of two men suspected of helping a B.C. inmate escape a pre-trial facility.
Mounties said late Friday that they had “tentatively identified” the men alleged to have helped Rabih Alkhalil escape from the North Fraser Pretrial Centre on Thursday.
Alkhalil is charged with first-degree murder in connection with the killing of gangster Sandip Durhe at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre in 2012.
“Time is of the essence and we need your help to get Alkhalil’s face in every airport, train station, taxi, rental car or anywhere else that he may be hiding,” Const. Deanna Law said.
“We are also hoping someone will recognize the photographs of two suspects who helped Alkhalil escape from jail. All three men are facing serious charges. If you see them, call 911 immediately.”
Police said that based on new information and the identification of the men allegedly involved in the jailbreak, they suspected a “strong international connection” that crossed Canada, the U.S., Europe and Asia.
Earlier in the day, Mounties had warned they feared Alkhalil was trying to use his international connections to flee the country, and said they were preparing a Canada-wide warrant and Interpol Red Notice.
Rabih Alkhalil was able to escape in a white van, police said.
Around 6:48 p.m. on Thursday, B.C. inmate Alkhalil was able to escape North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre dressed in a black jumpsuit with a high visibility vest with two others, who were either posing or hired as contractors.
The three left in a white Econoline Van and traveled west down Kingsway Ave. Mounties said they believed they had since located the getaway vehicle used in the escape.
“There will most definitely be a full-scale review and investigation into what happened and how it happened,” Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth said of the escape.
Police describe Alkhalil as a 35-year-old man, five feet ten inches, 166 pounds with short black hair and brown eyes.
One of the men who allegedly helped Alkhalil escape is described as being in his thirties, bald with a narrow face, arched eyebrows and with a slightly crooked nose.
Police described the second suspect as a man in his thirties, bald with an oval face, with light eyebrows and close-set eyes.
It is unclear where the photos came from and Global News has reached out to Coquitlam RCMP for further questions.
Police said he is considered dangerous and people should call 911 if they see him.
— with files from The Canadian Press