Crime/29 May 2023,15:35/ Staff Writer
Picture File: Five people accused of helping convicted rapist and jailbreak fugitive Thabo Bester (not seen) escape from the Mangaung Correctional Centre look on as they appear before the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on 16 May 2023. Picture: AFP.
Bloemfontein – Four of the five former G4S employees accused of assisting Facebook rapist Thabo Bester to escape from prison last year have been denied bail by the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court.
They include a former G4S supervisor, a CCTV technician, a suspended G4S security guard and a former G4S control room operator.
The fifth suspect, also a former control room operator, has been granted bail of R10,000, though, with the court finding the case against her is “porous”.
They were arrested after news of Bester’s escape broke in March, almost a year after the fire in his cell in which he was initially thought to have died.
Their applications for bail were heard earlier this month and Magistrate Motlhoko Khabisi handed down judgment on Monday afternoon.
“Court is also concerned about these allegations as it appears the offence was committed in cahoots with the people in whom trust was bestowed, that it was committed at a place expected to be secure and a safe place.”
He’s said it was “hard if not impossible to find the personal circumstances of the accused outweigh the interests of justice in this case”.
“I, therefore, find the interests of justice do not permit the release of the applicants number one, number two, number three and number four on bail and as such bail is denied.”
They’re due back in court on 20 June.