Free State High Court Judge Philip Loubser has dismissed the application by Dr Nandipha Magudumana to declare her arrest and deportation from Tanzania as unlawful.

Magudumana was challenging her deportation in the hope of being released from custody. She was arrested together with convicted murderer and rapist, Thabo Bester from the East African Country in April.

Also read: Dr Nandipha Magudumana to remain custody

Magudmana claimed in her court papers that she was blindfolded and abducted. She claimed she had been subjected to a disguised extradition when she, along with Bester, were handed over by Tanzanian officials to South African officials. The pair were then flown back to the country, in a private plane, flanked by SANDF and SAPS on 12 April.

Dr Nandipha Magudumana loses her unlawful arrest application
Free State High Court Judge Philip Loubser

But in his ruling on Monday, Judge Loubser found that Magudumana had consented to her removal by South African Home Affairs officials from Tanzania, because she wanted to return home to be with her children.


“It is patently clear on their own version that they willingly participated in the handing over event at the airport,” said the judge in his ruling. “Believing it was done in terms of international law and law in Tanzania.

“The respondents were aware that she was handed over for purposes of her prosecution. What they did not realise was that it was an extradition without process and not a deportation. This is what the law says.”

Loubser further explained the difference between deportation and extradition. “Deportation is the removal of an illegal foreigner.” “Extradition is the handing over by one state to another of a person accused of a crime.”

Magudumana is currently held at Bizzah Makhate Correctional Centre in Kroonstad, Free State. Magudumana is facing charges of fraud, violating dead bodies and aiding Bester’s escape from Mangaung prison in May 2022. She has yet to apply for bail.