It's been one year since Zephany Nurse was found

The woman she thought was her biological mother for 17 years is on trial for allegedly kidnapping her in 1997.

The woman accused of snatching Zephany Nurse from her mother’s arms in 1997 arrives at the Western Cape High Court on the second day of her trial. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Today marks a year since the girl known as Zephany Nurse learned she was kidnapped when she was an infant.

The woman she thought was her biological mother for 17 years is currently on trial in the Western Cape High Court for allegedly kidnapping her in 1997.

The Lavender Hill woman is accused of snatching the girl from her sleeping mother's arms at Groote Schuur Hospital.

At the end of last year, however, she told YOU magazine she never took the baby.

Celeste and Morne Nurse's prayers were answered when one of their children started high school last year and befriended a matriculant who bared a striking resemble to the daughter they lost.

The curious parents then contacted police and DNA tests were conducted.

It's understood that the sisters connected instantly.

The prosecution claims the accused befriended Zephany's biological mother in hospital and convinced her to hand over her crying baby so that she could get some sleep.

It's understood the teenager does not have a relationship with her biological family and still lives with the man she thought was her father.

Her biological father dodged questions about his relationship with her, saying he did not want to touch on the subject.

Members of the Nurse family say Zephany's biological parents are taking strain.

Her biological grandmother Zephra says they need closure.

"The pain, the suffering… especially for Morne and Celeste. I am happy that it will come to a close and the healing can start."

WATCH: #ZephanyNurse: Accused pleads 'not guilty'


Three witnesses will testify today as the trial enters its third day.

The accused, who's in her early 50s, may not be identified in order to protect Zephany's identity, who has grown up using a different name.

The first to take the stand has been an 85-year-old woman who used to work for the accused.

Mary Lewis shuffled into court and took the stand.

Lewis couldn't hear everything and explained to Judge John Hlophe that she's deaf in one ear.

She confirmed she used to work for the accused and was her good friend for many years.


But it was Home Affairs official Wilhelmina Hofmeyer who kept people sitting in the public gallery on the edge of their seats.

Hofmeyer worked at the Malmesbury Home Affairs office when Zephany's birth was registered, six years after her birth.

The state surprised the court by calling Hofmeyer's supervisor to testify too.

Gerhard Kotze, from the Home Affairs office, testified they can't prove who registered Zephany at their office in 2003 because they don't have the original copy of the birth registration application.

In her plea explanation, the accused claims she never applied for a birth certificate for Zephany.

She claims a woman who helped her adopt the baby handed her certain forms to sign.

She alleges the woman, known only as Sylvia, told her she would register the baby.

The State is expected to call one more witness that wasn't on its witness list.