Aug. 8, 2023


3 min read

Bester claims items worth R30m stolen from him

Bester claims items worth R30m stolen from him

Dr Nandipha Magudumana and Thabo Bester meet in court

Story highlights

    He and his lover, Dr Nandipha Magudumana, were in court on Tuesday along with 10 others who are accused of helping Bester escape from prison
    The case has been postponed to October for further investigation

Metro Audio Articles

Catch our weekly audio news daily only on Metro Radio Podcast News.

listen now

THABO Bester told the Bloemfontein Magistrate's Court on Tuesday that items to the tune of around R30 million went missing when he and his lover, Dr Nandipha Magudumana, were arrested in Tanzania in April.

Bester and 11 co-accused were in the dock in connection with his escape from the Mangaung prison last year.

His cell was set alight and officials believed that the body found inside it after the blaze was extinguished was his.

DNA tests later revealed that the body was that of Katlego Bereng.

The State alleges that Bereng's body was smuggled into the prison and put in Bester's cell, allowing the convicted rapist and murderer to escape.

On Tuesday morning, Magudumana and her co-accused father, Zolile Sekeleni, embraced in the dock but her feelings between her and Bester were most notable.

They whispered to each other, held hands and exchanged loving looks.

It was their first meeting since their arrest.

Both have complained about inhumane treatment from the police. 

Thabo Bester and Dr Nandipha Magudumana share loving glances in court on Tuesday 8 August.

Enjoy our daily newsletter from today

Access exclusive newsletters, along with previews of new media releases.

Magudumana said she had been handcuffed in the back of the police van on Tuesday morning, with no way of holding herself up as the speeding vehicle took turns and the driver applied brakes during the two-hour journey from Bizzah Makhate Correctional Centre in Kroonstad.

Bester claimed he was handcuffed for 23 hours a day inside his cell.

But the big shock was his claim that high-end goods worth a whopping R30 million that belonged to him had gone missing.

The items included the following:

  • iPhone 14 ProMax - worth R36 000
  • Samsung S23 - R32 000
  • Samsung Z4 - R40 000
  • iPad 16 - R18 000
  • Macbook Air 16 - R12 500
  • Macbook Pro 16 - R34 600
  • Burberry card holder - R15 500
  • Burberry sunglasses - R11 500
  • Tom Ford sunglasses - R9 500
  • HP laptop - R41 000
  • Louis Vuitton laptop bag - R51 000
  • "Marriage" ring - R350 000
  • 2X Audemars Piguet watches - R2 500 000 each
  • 2X FM watches - R2 500 000 each
  • 2X Rolex watches - R2 600 000 each
  • C watch - R1 750 000
  • Patek Philippe watch - R1 900 000
  • A Polo bag with clothes missing worth - R750 000


He also claimed the following cash amounts disappeared:

  • R295 000
  • $36 000 (about R680 000)
  • Tanzanian Shilling 7 200 000 (about R55 000)
  • Zambian Kwacha 1 400 000 (about 1.3 million)
  • £500 000 (about R12 million)
  • Swiss Francs 150 000 (about R3.2 million)

Bester opened a case at the Lanseria police station. 

The escaping case has been postponed to 11 October for further investigation. – News24

Share the story