Ninth suspect in Thabo Bester escape appears in court

Zanda Moyo will join eight others in the criminal trial on 20 June

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Zanda Moyo is the ninth accused in the Thabo Bester escape. Photo: Becker Semela

Zanda Moyo appeared in the Bloemfontein Magistrate Court on Tuesday. This brings the number of people accused of assisting rapist and murderer Thabo Bester’s escape from prison to nine. He will appear in court for the criminal trial on 20 June.

Moyo is charged with violating a body, fraud, and harbouring and concealing an escaped convict. Bester escaped from Mangaung Correctional Centre on 3 May 2022. He faked his death in a fire in his cell, leaving behind a burned body who police believe to be Katlego Mpholo.

During the bail hearings of five of the accused last month, the state alleged that Nandipha Magudumana, Bester’s girlfriend, claimed three bodies from morgues in Bloemfontein, one of which was used in the escape.

The state alleged that while claiming the second body, Magudumana told officials at the morgue that it was the brother of her friend, Zanda Moyo. A fake funeral was held for the man and police later found that the buried coffin was filled with maize meal.

GroundUp has also seen evidence that Bester made a booking via Airbnb for Nandipha Magudumana and three other people to stay in a luxury house in Ballito between 19 and 30 April 2022. The booking cost a total of R90,800. Among the guests who were given security access to the house were BZ Moyo and Zanele Moyo. Copies of their Zimbabwean ID documents were given to the landlord.

During the court proceedings, Moyo said he did not have a legal representative and asked whether he could contact his family.

Magistrate Mohlolo Khabisi granted his request and said that he can use LegalAid’s services, free of charge.

TOPICS:  Thabo Bester prison escape

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