THE manager of award-winning hip-hop group Teargas has been caught shoplifting at Edgars store at Northgate Mall in Johannesburg.
Siyabonga Mdluli tried to hide a bottle of Polo perfume worth R525 in his bag on Tuesday.
A source working in the store told Sowetan that Mdluli, who shares the same surname with Teargas band member Ntokozo, was caught on CCTV cameras putting the perfume in his bag.
"He pretended to be talking on the phone and he quickly took the perfume and put it in a bag that was hanging on his shoulder," said the source.
Mdluli was stopped by a security guard as he was trying to leave the store.
Inspector Karen Jacobs confirmed that a case of theft against Mdluli was opened on Tuesday at Honeydew police station. He was later released on R1000 bail.
The source said not long after Mdluli was caught, all three members of Teargas - Ntokozo and brothers Bantu and Eezee Hanabe - rushed to the store and begged the store manager to let Mdluli go because he was the group's manager.
"They pleaded with the management and told them that it was unlikely that Mdluli had stolen the perfume because he was rich and was their manager. "They begged the management to keep the issue under wraps because it was going to affect the group's image."
But Teargas' Ntokozo denied knowing Mdluli or about the theft incident. He told Sowetan that they did not have a manager and then dropped his phone.
Edgars manager Tifo Kunene confirmed the theft incident. He said Teargas members told him that Mdluli was their manager.