Mido Macia's family welcome ruling

Mido Macia’s family say today’s convictions handed to the eight former officers came as a major relief.

FILE: Graça Michel speaks to some of Mido Macia's friends and family members during his memorial service on 6 March 2013. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Mido Macia's family say today's convictions handed to the eight former officers who murdered him have come as a major relief.

Judge Bert Bam delivered his judgment in the High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday afternoon.

The Mozambican taxi driver died in a police holding cell after being dragged through the streets of Daveyton on the East Rand in February 2013.

[WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT, THIS IS NOT FOR SENSITIVE VIEWERS]

WATCH: Macia dragged behind police van.

While Bam delivered his judgement, he reflected on forensic pathologist Solly Skosana's testimony and the injuries Macia sustained according to the doctor's post-mortem report.

During this time Melitah Macia sobbed uncontrollably as she sat with other family members in the public gallery.

She says today justice has been served.

"Today I feel happy knowing that these people have been convicted because I was upset seeing them walking freely in the streets, not bothered while they knew what they did wasn't right."

Bam will deliver sentencing on 22 September and Melitah says she hopes he will not be lenient.

"I would be happy to see them spending the rest of their lives in prison."

All eight convicted murderers were immediately remanded in custody having spent the duration of the trial out on bail.

Furthermore, the judge found two of the convicted murderers lied about the Mozambican taxi driver assaulting one of them and disarming him.

Former officer Meshack Malele told the court he was, in fact, the victim claiming that Macia punched him.

But Bam says this is highly improbable.

"The versions of accused number one and two that the deceased attacked number one and robbed him of his firearm are fraught with discrepancies and improbabilities."

NPA WELCOMES VERDICTS

Meanwhile, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has joined Macia's family in welcoming the guilty verdicts and say the public is largely to thank for the successful convictions.

State prosecutors Charles Mnisi and Grace Mosetlha were congratulated after Bam said he is satisfied that they proved their case beyond reasonable doubt.

NPA spokesperson Luvuyo Mfaku was also present.

"As an institution, we welcome the conviction and we further commend the investigation and prosecution team."

He says the NPA is grateful to community members who were on the scene taking videos on the day Macia was assaulted and made special mention of two eye witnesses who took the stand during the trial.

"The entire community played a significant role in ensuring the video that was taken projected a clear picture."

CHILLING TESTIMONY HEARD DURING TRIAL

Chilling testimony of the injuries the Mozambican taxi driver sustained was heard in court during the trial in July.

Skosana was called to the police station in February 2013 to examine Macia's body.

He said he noticed speckles of blood in a holding cell.

Skosana added that among the injuries Macia sustained were lacerations to his head, chest and jaw and bite marks on his tongue.

He also testified Macia had bruises on his chest and back, which he referred to as 'dragging marks'.