2 die in blast at S. Africa jewelry pawn shop

AP News
Posted: Nov 12, 2013 2:20 PM
2 die in blast at S. Africa jewelry pawn shop

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — An explosion rocked a store that buys gold and jewelry in Johannesburg on Tuesday, killing at least two people and injuring three others. The exact cause of the blast was not immediately clear, but police did not suspect terrorism.

The explosion around 5:30 p.m. targeted a Moneypoint store, which exchanges or pawns jewelry, including diamonds, near the Eastgate Mall, chief Superintendent of Ekurhuleni Police Wilfred Kgasago said.

Brig. Neville Malila said no arrests have been made, and police at the moment suspect ordinary criminal activity was involved.

"We can confirm two people are dead and three people are injured," he said. "We don't have nationalities. We don't have names."

Forensic and bomb disposal experts were checking the scene, as are sniffer dogs, firefighters and police, he said. The building is surrounded by a large wall and police kept the public and media at a distance.

Police did not know how many people were inside the shop at the time of the explosion.

Clyde Alley, who was driving nearby, said the blast was loud.

"I sped off, not knowing what it was," he said. "I went straight home, then came back here" to learn what had happened.