Police seek help in identifying another body linked to Thabo Bester prison escape

07 July 2023 - 19:19
By Phathu Luvhengo
Free State police are seeking help to identify a body allegedly claimed from the Bloemfontein government mortuary by one of the suspects in the Thabo Bester escape case. File photo.
Image: Thapelo Morebudi Free State police are seeking help to identify a body allegedly claimed from the Bloemfontein government mortuary by one of the suspects in the Thabo Bester escape case. File photo.

Free State police are seeking help to identify a body that Thabo Bester's girlfriend Dr Nandipha Magudumana falsely claimed to be that of her father.

The body was found in a river in Bloemfontein.

Police spokesperson Brig Motantsi Makhele said the body was first found in Lovedale Road in Bloemfontein after a hit-and-run accident on October 9 2021.

“The body was then claimed by one of the suspects in the Thabo Bester escape case at the Bloemfontein government mortuary. It was found again on April 28 2022 in the Modder River,” said Makhele.

The body was linked to Magudumana after being retrieved with the mortuary’s identification toe tag still attached,

Makhele said the body is that of a black male. 

Free State police are looking for the next of kin of a man whose body was found in a river.
Image: Supplied Free State police are looking for the next of kin of a man whose body was found in a river.

“Anybody with information on who this man can be or the whereabouts of the next of kin can contact Col Ben Bolsiek at 082 466 8530.”  

Convicted rapist and murderer Bester escaped from the Mangaung Correctional Centre in May last year after faking his death in a fire in his prison cell.

The Sunday Times reported in April this year that Magudumana “stole three bodies” to aid Bester's escape.

The last body was burnt beyond recognition in Bester's prison cell as Bester wanted to convince authorities he had died in the inferno.

After months of living a lavish life outside jail, Bester and Magudumana's plot was uncovered and the pair fled the country. They were arrested in Tanzania travelling with fake documents, 

They were deported back to South Africa and remain behind bars.

TimesLIVE

Support independent journalism by subscribing to the Sunday Times. Just R20 for the first month.