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Gunmen free two awaiting trial prisoners in transit

A gang of at least five men stopped the vehicle and freed the two prisoners after they appeared in court.

The jail break happened at about 1pm this afternoon and no injuries have been reported. Picture: Barry Bateman/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng police have confirmed they are looking for seven suspects following a brazen prisoner escape in Atteridgeville.

Police say five gunmen ambushed a police van transporting a group of prisoners, two of whom are now on the run.

The jail break happened at about 1pm this afternoon and no injuries have been reported.

Police have setup a cordon around a lone police van which is parked in the centre of a traffic circle with its doors flung open.

The prisoners were being transported to the Pretoria Central Prison.

Two court orderlies were transporting 11 awaiting trial prisoners when they were ambushed about 500 metres from the court house.

A sedan blocked the van's path as five gunmen with pistols and assault rifles got out.

Police say they broke the lock and opened the back of the van before ordering the prisoners to get out.

It's believed they were looking for the suspects believed to be linked to the murder of a Laudium policeman over the weekend but they were not in the van.

As the gunmen sped away, two of the prisoners fled on foot.

While it hasn't been confirmed, it's understood the suspects crashed their getaway car near Olievenhoutbosch.

*Note: An earlier version of this article stated two of the men who escaped were linked to the murder of a Laudium policeman. Police

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