Seven killed and 47 injured in Venezuela prison explosion

Seven people are dead and many more injured after an explosion at a Venezuelan prison.
CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS

Seven people are dead and many more injured after an explosion at a Venezuelan prison.

An explosion on a Venezuela prison yard has killed seven inmates and left 47 wounded.

The Venezualan public prosecutor's office said Thursday (Friday NZ time) that it appears somebody threw two explosive devices at the Alayon detention center in the town of Maracay, two hours west of Caracas.

Local media reported that explosives were detonated Wednesday (Thursday NZ time) night during a clash among inmates.

Federal officials are launching an investigation.

READ MORE: Venezuela's prison problems stretch back years

Venezuelan prisons are notoriously overcrowded and lawless. Many are run by prison gangs that have access to powerful weapons behind bars.

The prison system, built to hold about 16,000 inmates, is currently estimated to house some 50,000 prisoners, according to the Venezuelan Prisons Observatory, which monitors prison conditions.

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 - AP

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