The oldest trick's in the book

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 25 May, 1996, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 25 May, 1996, 12:00am

The oldest trick in the book - a saw concealed in its pages - has led to the first escape in 40 years from a Tokyo prison.

Seven Iranians escaped from the Tokyo Detention Centre after one of them took delivery of a book sent from Teheran as a present. In it was a 20-centimetre saw.

The seven, only in custody for overstaying, spent three days sawing through window bars, covering the noise by repeatedly flushing the toilet and turning on taps.

After lights out on February 12, they scaled the 5.5-metre wall using a ladder made from small steel pipes tied together with bed sheets.

They fooled the guards by stuffing pillows and blankets into their bunks.

Five have been caught.