Premium Journalist
2 minute read
8 Dec 2015
3:38 pm

NPA to argue for Pistorius’ 15-year minimum sentence


Pistorius will continue to live at his uncle’s home in Waterkloof.

FILE PICTURE: Oscar Pistorius stands in the dock as sentence is delivered at the High Court in Pretoria, South Africa, 21 October 2014. Picture: EPA

The National Prosecuting Authority wanted the prescribed 15-year minimum sentence imposed on murderer Oscar Pistorius.

“He is convicted of murder, and he is a first offender. Fifteen years is prescribed in terms of the minimum sentencing act as the appropriate sentence for murder,” spokesman Luvuyo Mfaku said outside the North Gauteng High Court on Tuesday.

“We will argue for the imposition of the 15-year minimum sentence.”

He added that the prosecution authority had a responsibility to ensure that the law was applied in accordance with the constitution.

Athlete Pistorius indicated in his affidavit that he would approach the Constitutional Court for leave to appeal his murder conviction handed down by the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) last week.

In his affidavit Pistorius said he was appealing because his rights were infringed by the SCA when it considered points of fact rather than points of law when it convicted him of murder. Pistorius is also arguing that his prospects of a fair trial were diminished by the live television broadcasting of his trial, which he alleges resulted in certain witnesses refusing to give evidence.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel earlier told the court that there was no prospect Pistorius’s appeal succeeding.

If the appeal fails, Pistorius would be required to return to the high court for sentencing.

Judge Aubrey Ledwaba on Tuesday released Pistorius on R10,000 bail, and set out strict conditions, which included wearing an electronic monitoring device. The fallen paralympian, whose legal bills have wiped out his finances, was warned to pay his bail by Friday.

Pistorius will continue to live at his uncle’s home in the leafy suburb of Waterkloof, east of Pretoria.

In setting the bail conditions, Ledwaba ruled that Pistorius may leave the house between 7am and midday and was only allowed to travel within 20 km of his place of residence. If Pretorius needed to leave his residence at any other time he would have to get written authorisation from the investigating officer to do so.

Furthermore, Pistorius was not allowed to leave the Tshwane district and was ordered to hand over his passport to the investigating officer. The judge also warned Pistorius against applying for a passport while out on bail.

However, Ledwaba said Pistorius was not a flight risk, having adhered to all bail conditions set out in previous court appearances.

Mfaku said the double leg amputee would wear a wristband that would be electronically monitored by probation officers.

“Whenever he moves or perhaps leaves the 20km radius he would be monitored electronically through the wristband from the Department of Correctional Services,” explained Mfaku.

Last Thursday, the SCA overturned Pistorius’s culpable homicide conviction and instead convicted him of the murder of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. Pistorius shot Steenkamp through a bathroom door at his home on Valentine’s Day in 2013.

Pistorius has 15 days to appeal the SCA judgement.
– African News Agency (ANA)