Murdered train driver, Piet Botha. PHOTO: Supplied

CAPE TOWN - The United National Transport Union (Untu) on Friday pleaded with the Western Cape high court to impose life imprisonment on the two gang members who were convicted on Thursday for the 2016 murder and armed robbery of train driver Piet Botha.

“The court needs to make an example of these two gang members and send out a clear message that attacks on employees of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa), irrespective of where they are working, will no longer be tolerated.

“The senseless murder of Botha was one out of hundreds of horrendous attacks on employees of Prasa throughout the country, ranging from murder, attempted murder, attempted rape, armed robbery, assault to do grievous bodily harm, intimidation, kidnapping, and assault. Enough is enough,” said Steve Harris, Untu general secretary.

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Botha was shot dead in broad daylight while he was busy with training, waiting on the platform of Netreg Station on the central line between Cape Town and Khayelitsha in the Western Cape. He was robbed of his bag and his cellphone.

The Court heard the suspects were members of the Young Dixie Boys (YDB) gang in Bonteheuwel. 

Jatheme Hamid, 18, and Dorian Diedericks, 19, were found guilty of murder, robbery, and possession of an illegal firearm, amongst other charges by the provincial high court on Thursday.

The case was postponed to June 19 for a probation officer's report.

African News Agency/ANA