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Breaking! Death Row Prisoner Escapes from Mazaruni Maximum Security Prison

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19th of May, 2023. Guyana, South America. GSA News. Guyana News.

Last updated: May 19, 2023 at 22:09 pm


  • – Guyana Prison Service says Joint Services currently pursuing the escapee
  • The fugitive has been identified as Mark Royden Williams aka “Smallie.”
  • The incident occurred around 2:30 PM at the Mazaruni Prison in Region 7, Guyana, South America.

Williams had escaped during the deadly Camp Street prison riots. In July 2017, he along with others shot their way out of the prison killing one Prison Officer in the process. He was recaptured three months later. The convict is currently on death row after being convicted for several murders in the 2008 Bartica Massacre and the killing of GDF Soldier Ivor Williams who died during a shootout with gunmen in Buxton also in 2008. Williams was also tried but acquitted of murder charges relating to the Lusignan Massacre.

In a short statement, the Guyana Prison Service confirmed the incident and indicated that the escape was made possible with the assistance of ‘external persons.’ The Guyana Prison Service also indicated that the Joint Services is currently pursuing the escapee.

Statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs

MAY 19th, 2023 at 5 PM

Convicted mass murderer Mark Royden Durant also known as Royden Williams, and “Smallie’ escaped while being escorted back from a visit with the aid of heavily armed accomplices in a speedboat at Mazaruni Prison around 14:30 hrs. today (Friday, May 19, 2023).

The escort party was fired upon with AK-47 automatic rifles from the boat alongside the Mazaruni River during the transfer and during the resulting reported exchange of gunfire; Williams made good his escape.

The boat and its occupants proceeded upstream, past Itaballi landing, while Prison guards and Police in support undertook pursuit.

Additionally, members of the Joint Services have been mobilized to effect the recapture of Williams and to capture and or arrest his accomplices.

A preliminary investigation is underway, and persons are being questioned in relation to this extremely serious incident.

Williams has been convicted of murders stemming from the Bartica massacre in 2008 when he, along with other gunmen, ambushed and killed twelve (12) persons including three (3) policemen. Additionally, he had been sentenced to death in September last year over the killing on January 23rd, 2008, of Guyana Defense Force member Corporal Ivor Williams.

Royden Williams had previously escaped from the Camp Street Prison on July 09th, 2017 but was recaptured on October 10th, 2017, on the Weldaad Public Road, West Coast Berbice.

The Joint Services and other Security personnel are on high alert. All citizens in the Mazaruni and surrounding areas are hereby advised to take precautions and remain vigilant as the persons sought are armed and are considered as being extremely dangerous.

It should be noted that aiding and abetting a prison escapee can result in three (3) or more years imprisonment when or if convicted.

Details on the search for Williams and his accomplices will be provided as they emerge.

-End Quote –

Some content reprinted with permission from Action News Guyana.

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