Pistorius’ lawyer to argue state’s contentions

Oscar Pistorius. Picture: EPA

Barry Roux SC for jailed paralympian Oscar Pistorius on Friday told the South Gauteng High Court that they have not brought an application to appeal the state’s appeal.

Roux has asked that Judge Thokozile grant the defence team to be allowed to argue their contentions when the state approach the Supreme Court of Appeal in a bid to overturn the Blade Runner’s murder acquittal. He argued that the point the state is arguing on accepted facts and not points of law, which in effect, does not entitle them to an appeal.

However, Gerrie Nel, for the state has said this application be struck off the role as there is no leave for appeal. Nel cited previous case law to substantiate his view on the matter.

“You don’t have the right to grant this leave,” said Nel to Masipa, adding that there was nothing that indicates that the court had any further say once leave has been granted.

Previously, Pistorius’ lawyer Brian Webber said Masipa erred in allowing the appeal with regards to the matters of facts and law in the trial. He said the state did not argue on points of law, but rather on facts, which does not entitle them to appeal the matter before the SCA.

The same point was argued by Pistorius’ defence team during the state’s application for leave to appeal heard by Masipa in December. At the time, Masipa said she believed the questions brought by the state were based on questions of law, including whether she correctly applied Dolus Eventualis (awareness of the likely outcome of an action) to the facts and circumstances in the case.

She also acknowledged that there was a possibility that another court could rule differently on the murder charge, which Masipa acquitted the paralympian of in September.

The state is expected to appear before the SCA later this year in a bid to have Pistorius’ culpable homicide charge overturned in favour for a murder conviction.

Pistorius shot and killed Steenkamp through a locked toilet door in his Pretoria home on Valentine’s Day in 2013.

Masipa acquitted Pistorius of murder but found him guilty of culpable homicide as well as negligent discharging of a firearm in Tasha’s restaurant in Sandton in 2013.

Pistorius was sentenced to five years. For discharging a firearm at Tasha’s restaurant in January 2013, he was sentenced to three years in jail suspended for five years. The sentences are running concurrently.

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