Nearly 1,600 Brazilian inmates who received holiday furloughs have not returned to their prisons, the state-run Agencia Brasil reported Wednesday.

The number represents 5.93 percent of the 26,486 prisoners who were given furloughs for good behavior in the states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Espirito Santo, as well as in the Federal District of Brasilia.

The representative for the National Council for Criminal and Prison Policy, Davi Tangerino, said that many of the prisoners now considered "fugitives" might return to the prisons in the coming days, but some of them had traveled to other states where they live and had transportation problems.

Tangerino said that if the fugitives are recaptured they will have to serve the rest of their sentences without any possibility for additional furloughs. EFE