South African authorities are seeking to understand how a high-profile convicted m¥rderer faked his own d£ath in a fir£, then escaped prison to live in the open with his celebrity doctor girlfriend, CNN is reporting.
It’s a bizarre story that has embarrassed South Africa, exposed alleged loopholes in the management of a private prison and captivated the nation with every blockbuster revelation.
Thabo Bester was deported to South Africa by Tanzanian authorities on Thursday after being arrested in the border town of Arusha, having apparently fled the country. This comes as media reports raised questions about the prison fir£ where he was said to have di£d.
The 35-year-old convicted m¥rderer was arrested with his girlfriend Dr. Nandipha Magudumana and a Mozambican national named as Zakaria Alberto on Friday. South African police minister Bheki Cele told reporters that the trio had several passports each that had not been stamped and were just 10 kilometers from crossing into Kenya.
Bester was sent to the Kgosi Mampuru Central Maximum prison in Pretoria where he will be closely watched. Magudumana was also deported to Tanzania and named as an accomplice. She was arrested pending a court appearance on Thursday, according to the Police, and will be charged with m¥rder, fra¥d as well as aiding and abetting his escape.
It is reported that he was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 for the r@p£ and mYrder of model Nomfundo Tyhulu. A court had previously found him guilty of the rap£ and r%/bbery of two other women he lured to his home on social media, with local media dubbing him “the Facebook r@pist.”
He was initially reported to have diEd in a fire at the prison las May. But in November, the official position by South African prison authorities that Bester had been found dEad in his cell began to unravel after local investigative outlet GroundUp’s reporting raised doubts.
Authorities later concluded that the b*rned body found in his cell was not Bester, and the person had diEd before the fir£ began. The DCS last month said Bester appeared to have walked out of the facility in “a well calculated and organised escape debacle.”