Quebec provincial police say three inmates broke out of Orsainville detention center Saturday and fled in a green helicopter, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported.

A spokesman for Surete du Quebec said a search is underway for Yves Denis Yvon Lamontagne, Denis Lefebvre and Serge Pomerleau -- all of whom have ties to the Hells Angels motorcycle gang. They were arrested 2010 in a major bust known as Operation Ecrevisse and were awaiting trial.

The escape occurred about 7:45 p.m. EDT, the spokesman said.

The escape is the second of its kind in little more than a year, the Montreal Gazette reported. In the earlier escape at St-Jerome prison the helicopter pilot was forced to fly at gunpoint and two inmates climbed a rope ladder to the hovering chopper. The fugitives and the two who hijacked the helicopter were arrested a few hours later in Mont-Tremblant.