Oscar Pistorius, through his defence advocate Barry Roux, has filed papers opposing the state’s application for leave to appeal Judge Thokozile Masipa’s six-year jail term handed down to Pistorius for murder.
He killed Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day in 2013.
“It has always been the version of the accused [Pistorius] that he factually did not intend to kill the deceased,” Roux wrote in his heads of argument.
“The trial court’s finding is consistent with this that, at the time of the shooting, he genuinely believed the deceased was in the bedroom and that it was an intruder in the toilet.”
However, Pistorius was not found guilty of murdering Steenkamp by the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA), but he was found guilty of the intentional murder of a human being.
The SCA found that: “He must have foreseen, and therefore did foresee, that the person he was firing at behind the door might be fatally injured, yet he fired without having a rational or genuine fear that his life was in danger.
“The accused ought to have been found guilty of murder on the basis that he had fired the fatal shots with criminal intent in the form of dolus eventualis. As a result of the errors of law referred to, and on a proper appraisal of the facts, he ought to have been convicted not of culpable homicide on that count but of murder,” said the SCA, referring the matter back to Masipa for sentencing.
Pistorius was subsequently sentenced to six years’ imprisonment, which Nel has subsequently appealed again.
“The sentence of six years’ imprisonment on the murder charge, with respect, attracts the epithets ‘shocking, startling and ‘disturbingly inappropriate’,” wrote Nel in his submission to the SCA.
The appeal is expected to be heard next week Friday.