Oscar's manager blames the media

By Drum Digital
14 October 2014

Oscar Pistorius's manager Petrus van Zyl wished the media would show a "bit more respect" for the culpable homicide-convicted paralympian.

Oscar Pistorius's manager Petrus van Zyl wished the media would show a "bit more respect" for the culpable homicide-convicted paralympian, the High Court in Pretoria heard on Tuesday.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel was cross-examining Van Zyl during pre-sentencing proceedings about an email he sent to Pistorius's lawyer Barry Roux on September 22.

The email included a photograph of the athlete speaking to disabled people.

Van Zyl wrote that "these platforms are now all taken away by the State and the media" and Nel asked what he meant by that.

"I think if it was handled with a bit more respect from the media Mr Pistorius could still be invited," he said.

Van Zyl said the media reported facts incorrectly and if they did not do that then maybe Pistorius would still have opportunities.

The court heard that even after the shooting, Van Zyl still received invitations for Pistorius to have motivational talks.

Under cross-examination, Van Zyl said in hindsight he realised it was an "error in judgment" to blame the State alongside the media in his email.

Nel said he made that comment because he viewed Pistorius as a victim but Van Zyl denied it.

"I'm going to move on but I find it very strange that you would put something in that you don't believe... I'm flabbergasted. But it found its way in," said Nel.

Pistorius sat with his head down and made notes as his silver-haired manager spoke about the charities he was involved in.

On September 12 Pistorius was found guilty of the culpable homicide of his girlfriend, model and law graduate Reeva 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 February 14 last year, killing Steenkamp. The State had argued he killed her during an argument.

Judge Thokozile Masipa also found Pistorius guilty of discharging firearm in public, when he shot from his friend Darren Fresco's Glock pistol 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 September 30, 2012.

Source : Sapa

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