The Pietermaritzburg High Court has ruled in favour of the leading Investigation Officer, Bhekumuzi Sikhakhane, who had filed an application for some of the state witnesses in the Glebelands Hostel case to testify in camera.
The trial of eight men, who were arrested in connection with the violence at the Hostel in Umlazi south of Durban, is underway.
Sikhakhane told the court the four state witnesses who used to live in the hostel would be intimidated to testify in the presence of the public in the court gallery. He also told the court that some witnesses have been killed in Glebelands hostel cases before.
The court also heard that out of the four state witnesses who will testify in camera, one has been placed under witness protection programme. The three others have been placed in a place of safety.
The court has asked the relatives of the accused and some people occupying the gallery to leave the courtroom.
The trial continues.