‘I celebrated when I heard Thabo Bester died in a fire,’ says rape victim’s mother

Thabo Bester

Thabo Bester

Published Mar 29, 2023


Durban - The mother of one of the victims Thabo Bester raped said for 10 months, she had been living in peace knowing her daughter’s attacker had been dead.

But when news of his brazen escape broke, the woman said she felt that the rape ordeal had happened a week ago.

Bester had reportedly died in a fire at the Mangaung prison on May 3, 2022.

However, shocking revelations revealed that the burnt body in Cell 35 was not that of Bester.

The dead person, who has not been identified, died due to blunt force injury.

Police have since launched a manhunt for the Bester, dubbed the Facebook rapist.

In 2011, Bester received a life sentence for the murder of a woman and the rape of two others.

His modus operandi would be to lure women on social media, offering them modelling contracts before raping them.

He was convicted of killing Nomfundo Tyhulu, a car salesperson.

IOL reported that Tyhulu had sold Bester a BMW and was killed while dating him.

He had stabbed her to death at a Bed and Breakfast.

This week, the one of the victim’s mother said her nightmares had stopped when she heard Bester died in the fire.

She told News 24 that news of his death was so wonderful that she had even celebrated.

When hearing of his escape, the woman said she was in disbelief that someone could escape from such a high-maximum security prison.

She told News 24 that this escape was higher up and called for accountability.

“For years, the victims have been trying to move on with their lives and rebuild. To have this happen, I am absolutely heartbroken,” she told News 24.

The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) indicated it would not be renewing its contract with G4S, with several officials having been suspended.