Prison van blast kills three

Commissioner Tom Moyane described the escape attempt as one of the most daring he had ever seen.

Johannesburg Central Prison. Picture: Shain Germaner/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Correctional Services Commissioner Tom Moyane described Monday's escape attempt near the Johannesburg Central Prison as one of the most daring attempts he had ever seen.

Three people were killed and 14 others injured when explosives were detonated on a vehicle carrying prisoners from a Randburg court.

Police are still trying to determine how the prisoners managed to get the explosives.

According to officials, they are now certain that Monday's explosion was a prison escape attempt due to the immaculate timing of the blast.

The van was travelling on the Golden Highway, three streets away from the southern Johannesburg prison.

The device detonated as the vehicle was slowing down to turn.

Police are still trying to find out the kind of device that was used.

Two prisoners managed to escap for a short while, but were quickly rearrested by officers.

Police spokesperson Neville Malila said the driver heard a loud bang just outside the prison.

The injured inmates were taken to various hospitals.

Malila said all remaining prisoners were back inside the prison complex.