Oscar has lost everything - Roux

2014-10-17 11:05
(File: AP)

(File: AP)

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Pretoria - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius lost everything in the aftermath of his shooting Reeva Steenkamp dead, the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria heard on Friday.

"He was on the rise," his lawyer Barry Roux told the court during closing arguments for sentencing.

"He's lost his immovable property. He's lost his moveable property. He's lost his sponsors. It's a person that's down and out. He's broke.

"He has nothing. He hasn't even money to pay for expenses."

Arguing to have his client spared a jail sentence, Roux referred to a book "Ubuntu and the Law" which deals with a move towards restorative justice.

He said society had become used to the idea that prison was the punishment of choice. Instead he called for punishment that addressed the interest of all parties.

Pistorius wiped tears from his eyes as Roux spoke.

Roux referred to case law, where one Warren Vorster had shot and killed his domestic worker's son, thinking the boy was being attacked in the Zozo hut in his garden. The shot went through the window and the boy was struck in the head.

"Mr Vorster was beside himself with pain, grief, and remorse."

The boy's mother felt her son had "died like an animal", Roux said.

The court imposed a community-based sentence.

Admiration for the Steenkamps

Roux said he had admiration for the Steenkamp’s parents.

"I have absolute admiration for the parents of the deceased who have suffered the most but remained neutral... There is no vengeance," Roux said.

"I can only admire them."

He referred the court to a statement released by the Steenkamps earlier this week where they said that were advised by their legal team to remain neutral.

Steenkamp's parents Barry and June sat in the front row of the public gallery and looked at Roux as he spoke.

Barry Steenkamp occasionally glanced over at Pistorius who sat head down.

On 12 September Judge Thokozile Masipa found Pistorius guilty of the culpable homicide of model and law graduate Steenkamp, but not guilty of her murder. Pistorius had claimed he thought there was a burglar in his toilet when he fired four shots through the locked door in the early hours of 14 February last year, killing Steenkamp.

Masipa found Pistorius guilty of discharging a firearm in public, when a shot from his friend Darren Fresco's Glock pistol went off under a table at Tasha's restaurant in Melrose Arch, Johannesburg, in January 2013.

Pistorius was found not guilty on two firearms-related charges - illegal possession of ammunition, and shooting through the open sunroof of a car with his 9mm pistol while driving with friends in Modderfontein on 30 September 2012.

Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  barry roux  |  crime  |  pistorius trial

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