One of the prisoners was apprehended after he became caught in the facility's barbed wire fence. The picture on the left shows the window from which the men escaped. Pictures: Supplied

Five detainees – charged with crimes from robbery to murder – escaped from the Empangeni Medium Correctional Centre on Monday.

A sixth inmate attempted to escape but was later found stuck on the facility’s barbed wire fence.

The Department of Correctional Services in KwaZulu-Natal confirmed the incident in a statement.

They said that, according to the preliminary investigation, the inmates escaped at approximately 3am through a communal window cell after the window’s bars were forcefully bent away. 

They then jumped over a barbed wire fence – which is six metres tall – making their way to the street. 

“All five inmates are very dangerous to the public due to their crimes allegedly committed. At the moment these inmates are at large, and the KZN Department of Correctional Services appeals to any member of the public who may have information that could lead to the arrest of these inmates to come forward and report (their sightings) immediately to the police or call the crime prevention number 08600 10111.”

The detainees that escaped are as follows:

Mukelani Njabulo Skheleqe Sibiya from Nongoma, Matshamhlophe reserve next to Bhobhobho Primary school
Alleged crime: murder and robbery; 

Sifisokuhle Mfeka from Dokodweni at Ngulule reserve next to Thembalihle store
Alleged crime: murder;
Siyabonga Mshana Khumalo from Mtubatuba, KwaNkombose reserve next to Zamani Store Alleged crime: murder;

Dumisani Patrick Ncamphalala from Richards Bay, Mandlazini reserve next to Vukuzenzele store
Alleged crime: housebreaking with robbery and attempted murder;

Themba Sipho Dlodlo, from Esikhaleni, Mandlankala reserve next to Maqhama Primary school
Alleged crime: robbery with aggravating circumstances; and

Bonginkosi Olive Nxumalo (found trapped on the barbed wire fence)
Alleged crime: possession of illegal firearm and ammunition, attempted murder and robbery.

The Mercury