21 June 2018
The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) has welcomed the sentencing of two Young Dixie Boys gang members to long prison terms for murder. Jatheme Hamid (18) and Dorian Diedericks (19) were convicted of killing Piet Barend Botha, a Netreg Train Driver in June 2016.
On Wednesday Judge Mark Sher of the Western Cape High Court sentenced Hamid and Diedericks for 20 years for murder, 12 years for robbery, eight years for possession of an illegal firearm, three years for gang-related charges and two years for possession of illegal ammunition.
Judge Sher ruled that sentences for three of the counts will run concurrently which will see them serve an effective 25 years behind bars. The two men were minors at the time they shot and killed Botha at Netreg Station and robbed of him of his bag and cell phone. Botha was a member of the United National Transport Union (UNTU) – an affiliate of FEDUSA – at the time of his death. Their co-accused, Andrews, was convicted of the illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition, and sentenced to 12years imprisonment, suspended for four years.
UNTU General Secretary Steve Harris said the stiff sentences showed that criminals can no longer act with impunity.
“UNTU believes that these sentences will serve as a deterrent for other criminals in a situation where Government, especially the Rapid Rail Unit of the South African Police Service, and the Crime Intelligence Unit of the South African Police Service, has lost the battle against international organised crime syndicates that are targeting the rail infrastructure for copper theft and brutal criminals who target Prasa employees and commuters for their personal belongings,” said Harris.
“This Union is so grateful that the Court and has heard our appeals. Too many lives have been lost, beaten, raped and assaulted on our railway lines that have become a warzone for those who have to work on it and to those who have no other alternative but to use trains, which is the cheapest form of transport in our country”.
FEDUSA is the largest politically non-aligned trade union federation in South Africa and represents a diverse membership from a variety of sectors in industry. See www.fedusa.org.za for more information.
For interviews please contact:
FEDUSA General Secretary
084 805 1529
UNTU General Secretary
082 566 5516
FEDUSA Media Officer
072 637 8096