16 officers linked to man's death under police custody granted bail

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) swooped on the officers last week and they have appeared in court on charges of murder and assault.

FILE: They were granted bail of various amounts of between R1,000 and R2,000. Picture: SAPS.

JOHANNESBURG - Sixteen law enforcement officers, including three security officials, have appeared in court over the death of a man who was arrested for breaking the lockdown regulations in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) swooped on the officers last week and they have appeared in court on charges of murder and assault.

They were granted bail of various amounts of between R1,000 and R2,000.

Ipid spokesperson Lizzy Suping said four individuals were arrested on 1 April 2020, for not staying at home and allegedly assaulted by officers from the Soweto Visible Policing Unit and officers and private security company VSS.

They were detained at the Lenasia police station and during the course of the night, one started complaining of stomach problems whereafter an ambulance was called.

But he died at the police station.

The accused were arrested in two batches of eight, the first on 12 July 2022 and the second, on 14 July 2022.

Bail was set at R2,000 for the police officers and R1,000 for the security officers and they were ordered not to contact or communicate with the victims or the witnesses.