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Tuesday, 3 November 2015
Oscar Pistorius May Receive Increased Jail Time
South African paralympian, Oscar Pistorius, who was freed on parole last month faces more time in jail as South Africa asks Appeal Court to convict him of murder.
The celebrated athlete was found guilty for the culpable homicide of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp and guilty of reckless endangerment with a firearm at a restaurant in a separate incident. He was sentenced to prison for 5 years in October 2014, but was let off on parole after one year behind bars.
State lawyers now intend to argue before the Supreme Court that the high court judge was wrong to let Pistorius off the more serious charge of premeditated murder after he fired four shots through a door, killing Reeva Steenkamp.
The 28-year-old track star will not be present at the one-day hearing in Bloemfontein, his lawyer Barry Roux told Reuters.
A panel of five judges will hear the appeal, and could either order a retrial, convict Pistorius of murder themselves or reject the prosecution’s appeal, legal experts have said.
Pistorius, dubbed “Blade Runner” because of the carbon fibre prosthetic blades he uses to compete, denied deliberately killing his girlfriend during his six-month trial, saying he mistook her for an intruder at his home. Prosecutors said Pistorius intended to kill Steenkamp, who they said fled to the toilet during a row.
A murder conviction would result in a minimum sentence of 15 years in prison.