WATCH: Trailer for ‘Tracking Thabo Bester’ the true-crime documentary South Africa has been asking for

Showmax has just dropped the trailer for ‘Tracking Thabo Bester’, produced by IdeaCandy. Picture: Supplied

Showmax has just dropped the trailer for ‘Tracking Thabo Bester’, produced by IdeaCandy. Picture: Supplied

Published Mar 4, 2024


Ever since GroundUp first broke the news that the convicted murderer and rapist Thabo Bester did not burn to death in Cell 35 after all and was instead shopping at Woolworths in Sandton City, South Africans have been calling for the drama to be brought on screens.

Showmax has finally answered the call and released the trailer for the true-crime documentary ‘Tracking Thabo Bester’.

Thabo Bester was the most searched person in South Africa on Google in 2023, with his co-accused, Dr Nandipha Magudumana, just behind in fourth place.

The whole country obsessed over Bestermania and the stormy tale of love, murder, deception and corruption.

The larger-than-life story of South Africa’s most famous prison break is in safe hands: ‘Tracking Thabo Bester’ is being produced by local true-crime pioneers IdeaCandy.

The production company was behind the SAFTA-winning ‘Devilsdorp’, the Sanlam Group Financial Journalist of the Year-winning ‘Steinheist’, and the Showmax true-crime record breaker ‘Rosemary’s Hitlist’.

Their four-part investigation screens in two halves on Showmax on March 15 and 22.

The first episode follows GroundUp journalists Marecia Damons and Daniel Steyn as they investigate an anonymous tip-off that the burnt body at Mangaung Correctional Centre may not have been Bester.

Subsequent episodes look at why Bester was called the Facebook Rapist and in jail originally; how a celebrity doctor fell for a convicted criminal and left her children behind to go on the run with him to Tanzania; and who really died in Cell 35.

Interviews include prisoners and prison warders at Mangaung Correctional Centre; the family of Katlego Bereng Mpholo, whose burnt body was found in Cell 35.

Nkosinathi Sekeleni, Nandipha’s older brother; who exposed Magudumana’s relationship with the infamous Facebook rapist, previously declined to be drawn into commentary on the investigation. He features in the documentary.

Former South African Police Service head profiler, Dr Gérard Labuschagne, who interviewed Bester after his 2012 arrest for rape and murder, also appears in the documentary.

The documentary also shows the media and social media reactions to the story.

The trial of Bester, Magudumana and their co-accused was supposed to begin in the Free State High Court at the end of February, but has been postponed to June 5.

IOL Entertainment