“Facebook Rapist” Thabo Bester Deported from Tanzania to South Africa


"Facebook Rapist" Thabo Bester Deported from Tanzania to South Africa

Thabo Bester, South Africa’s infamous “Facebook rapist,” has been deported from Tanzania after he had faked his own death in prison and fled to the East African state.

He was apprehended and, with the help of Tanzanian officials, returned to South Africa, where he was taken straight to prison. Bester’s girlfriend, celebrity doctor Nandipha Magudumana, who was arrested with him, was also deported.

He had been on the run for a year after it was believed he died by setting himself on fire in his prison cell in the South African city of Bloemfontein. However, a new post-mortem investigation revealed that the body was not his, and a manhunt was launched.

Bester Conviction & Sentencing

Bester had been convicted in 2012 for the rape and murder of his model girlfriend, Nomfundo Tyhulu, and in 2011 for raping and robbing two other women. Bester is known as the “Facebook rapist” for using the social networking site to lure his victims. His escape sparked outrage in South Africa, which has one of the highest rates of sexual assault in the world.

Bester Escape From Prison

UK-owned security company G4S was running the prison from where Bester escaped.

The prison’s management has been taken over by South African prison officials, pending the outcome of an investigation into Bester’s escape.

Zolile Sekeleni, Nandipha Magudumana’s father and a suspended prison warden, Senohe Matsoara, have been charged with murder, arson, and aiding and abetting Bester’s escape. Two other people have also been arrested in connection with Bester’s escape, but they have not yet been formally charged.

The South African convicted criminal has been taken to a high-security prison in the capital, Pretoria, while his girlfriend has been taken to court in Bloemfontein. She will be charged with murder, fraud, and helping Bester escape. Mr Bester is also expected to face fresh charges following his prison break.

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola and Police Minister Bheki Cele expressed their gratitude for Tanzanian officials’ assistance in Bester’s deportation. Fingerprint confirmation and cooperation from Tanzania sealed the deal for Bester’s swift return to South Africa.

Magudumana, bester’s girlfriend was reportedly cooperative, while Bester himself was not. The couple was arrested in Arusha, Tanzania, and deported back to South Africa via a specially chartered plane.

National police commissioner Fannie Masemola said Magudumana would face charges of aiding and abetting escape, murder due to a “number of bodies found,” violation of bodies, and fraud. Police Minister Bheki Cele acknowledged the cooperation of Magudumana and accused Bester of not being cooperative.

South Africa has one of the highest rates of sexual assault in the world, and Bester’s escape from prison only added to the public’s outrage. The country has been working to improve its criminal justice system and crack down on gender-based violence.

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