Thapelo Lekabe

By Thapelo Lekabe

Senior Digital Journalist

Dr Nandipha remanded in custody after appearing in court for murder, other charges

The matter was postponed for bail information and a possible bail application.

The girlfriend of convicted Facebook rapist Thabo Bester, Dr Nandipha Magudumana, has been remanded in custody after making her first court appearance.

Magudumana appeared in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Thursday afternoon. She has not been formally charged yet, but according to police, she will face charges of aiding and abetting an escape from prison, murder, violation of bodies and fraud.

ALSO READ: Thabo Bester and Dr Nandipha Magudumana back in SA

Court appearance

During her court appearance, Magudumana was joined by Tebogo James Dipholo, an employee contracted to a company that installs CCTV cameras at the Mangaung Correctional Centre (MCC), where Bester escaped custody after faking his death.

RELATED: Employee arrested for allegedly manipulating cameras at Mangaung prison

The 44-year-old man was arrested on Wednesday. He allegedly manipulated the MCC’s cameras, for a fee, on the night and morning that the so-called Facebook rapist escaped from jail.

WATCH: Dr Nandipha’s first court appearance

Magudumana will appear in court again on Monday along with other co-accused in Bester’s prison escape.

The matter was postponed for bail information and a possible bail application.

The celebrity doctor and Bester landed at Lanseria International Airport in the early hours of Thursday morning under heavy police guard after they were deported from Tanzania to South Africa following their arrest last Friday in Arusha.

The duo was nabbed by Tanzanian authorities along with a Mozambican national who is believed to have assisted them to skip the country.

Thabo Bester prison escape

Bester escaped from the MCC in Bloemfontein in May 2022 after it was initially believed he had committed suicide by setting himself alight in his cell.

READ: JICS’ Edwin Cameron ‘feels complicit in the insufficient response’ on Thabo Bester

However, the Department of Correctional Services (DCS), which originally declared him dead, confirmed that the charred body found in his cell was not that of Bester, who was convicted in 2012 of rape and murder.

The so-called Facebook rapist, who lured his victims through the social media platform, had in fact been alive and at large for almost a year.

Magudumana is accused of aiding and abetting Bester’s daring and elaborate escape from prison that has captivated the nation.


So far, five people, including Magudumana’s father and a former G4S prison warder, have been arrested in connection with the jailbreak.

G4S is the company that was contracted by the DCS to run the Mangaung prison when Bester escaped from custody.

Since arriving in the country, Bester was kept in custody in the maximum-security section of Kgosi Mampuru II Prison in Pretoria.

National Correctional Services commissioner Makgothi Thobakgale said the convict was placed under 24/7 surveillance.

Additional reporting by Faizel Patel

WATCH: ‘Thabo Bester will be guarded by highly trained officers’

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