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Hospital cleaner accused of baby theft

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A Groote Schuur Hospital cleaner appeared in the Cape Town District Court on Monday for allegedly stealing a newborn baby from the maternity ward.

Tobekaya Mgqaza, 35, was not asked to plead when she appeared before Magistrate Joe Magele.

The matter was postponed to February 13, when she is expected to bring a formal bail application.

According to the charge sheet, Mgqaza was arrested on Friday, with the unharmed infant in her possession, at her home at the Harare informal settlement in Khayelitsha.

The prosecutor said the State would oppose her release on bail, but needed time to probe her history for bail information.

The defence attorney told the court Mgqaza had no previous convictions or pending cases, and had a fixed abode.

She is charged with kidnapping baby Baxolile Fem-Fem (SUBS: CORR) by removing him from his cot next to his mother Noveliswa Fem-Fem’s bed, while she slept on New Year’s night.

According to provincial police spokesman Captain Frederick van Wyk, a police investigation led detectives to Mgqaza’s home. SAPA

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