6 inmates killed in Venezuela jail violence

By the Associated Press | January 10, 2012 | 11:11 PM EST

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Authorities in Venezuela say six prisoners have been killed in fighting at a jail.

Army Gen. Hector Coronado Bogarin tells state radio that the fighting broke out Monday at a police lockup in southwestern Tachira state.

The authorities say other inmates initially took eight police officers hostage, but released four of them. Officials say the last four captives were freed Tuesday after talks with the inmates.

Killings are frequent in Venezuela's overcrowded prisons and jails. Inmates also seize hostages periodically to press various demands.

State government official Julio Hernandez says police officers who were guarding the jail when the fighting broke out have been suspended pending an investigation.