Pistorius not a flight risk - lawyers

2013-03-11 10:32

Johannesburg - Lawyers for Oscar Pistorius have filed an appeal against bail restrictions imposed on the Olympian, who is charged with murdering his girlfriend, according to papers released by the Pistorius family on Monday.

"The conditions appealed against are unwarranted and not substantiated by the facts," said the appeal, which was filed in Pretoria on Friday.

The appeal reflected the robust defence strategy of lawyers for Pistorius, who has been staying at his uncle Arnold's home in a Pretoria suburb since he was released on bail on 22 February.

It is a delicate balance because the Pistorius family has also sought to keep a low profile, expressing sorrow for the death of Reeva Steenkamp on 14 February. Pistorius says he mistakenly shot Steenkamp, thinking she was an intruder in his home. Prosecutors believe he killed her intentionally after an argument.

Bail conditions

The Associated Press received a copy of the court papers by e-mail from representatives of the Pistorius family. The appeal was prepared by Ramsay Webber, a legal firm based in Johannesburg.

In the papers, lawyers for the double-amputee athlete argued against the requirement that he surrender all passports and travel documents, and refrain from applying for such documents pending the end of his case.

The lawyers said evidence presented at the athlete's bail hearing showed he is not a flight risk and should have the option of travelling outside South Africa as long as he has official permission.

The appeal also said there was "no basis in fact or in law" justifying terms under which Pistorius must be supervised by a probation officer and a correctional official.

Officials will visit Pistorius at his uncle's home at least four times a month, according to James Smalberger, chief deputy commissioner of the department of correctional services, who spoke to The Associated Press last month.

"He's not under house arrest, but his movements need to be known to us so that we don't pitch there and he's not there," Smalberger had said. "We agree on 'free time' normally during the course of the day, and in the evening we expect him to be home."


The appeal against the bail conditions also objected to the requirement that Pistorius refrain from using alcohol or any banned substance, even though he had no intention of doing so.

"The mere use of any substance with alcohol in it will give rise to a transgression of the wide condition imposed," the appeal said.

In addition, the runner should be allowed access to the property at Silverwoods Country Estate where he shot Steenkamp, once the State completes its investigations there within a "reasonable time limit", according to Pistorius's legal camp.

"A blanket restriction on speaking to residents is unfair" and infringes on Pistorius's rights to consult people on the estate to prepare for his trial, the appeal said.

Chief Magistrate Desmond Nair had set bail at R1m. The 26-year-old track star was also ordered to turn in any guns he owns, and cannot leave the district of Pretoria without his probation officer's permission.

- See News24's Pistorius Special Report.

  • janice.mcmaster.92 - 2013-03-11 10:34

    Im rooting for you Oscar!

      Kevin Walker - 2013-03-11 11:35

      Send Oscar your address !!

      heathwaymaster - 2013-03-11 15:32

      Had the feeling giving him bail was a bad thing. He is so blatantly ungrateful for this miracle that he is now strutting around like a VIP, not a callous murderer of a beautiful, talented, young woman, who he deprived of an adult life. He should have never been let out of jail and left there to rot for the rest of his miserable life. He acts as though he is being accused of not paying a parking ticket. And for those who scream “Innocent before found guilty”, if one understands the facts of the case, he is as guilty as sure as night follows day.

      Andre Jacobs - 2013-03-12 06:52

      @Rabie- He wants to get at the other guy that they were fighting about. This guy could be overseas or in a neighbouring country and since a friend said he is suicidal, it means he can kill this guy and then commit suicide. He could be blaming other people that "caused" this situation. The magistrate made a big mistake to grant him bail because if Oscar has a temper and he goes after this other guy, any one can be in danger that comes between him and this other guy. If something happens this magistrate will have to live with it.

  • Miandra van Zyl - 2013-03-11 10:38

    Yeah right and what happened to that advocate who molested children with Barbie? Mmmmm he flew off to Russia....

      janice.mcmaster.92 - 2013-03-11 10:41

      And everyone recognised him wherever he went? I dont think so!

      herman.bester.58 - 2013-03-11 10:50

      and is now sitting in a Russian jail

      ????? ????? - 2013-03-11 11:03

      Belarusian authorities are making sure he pays for his crimes!!

  • ANASKA - 2013-03-11 10:39

    Why should we believe those damn lawyers!! - Pistorius is thinking of committing suicide because he had to sell his horse and killing Reeva but he claims he would like to go back to his house in Pretoria where this awful murder took place - very creepy!! If he is so depresed he would need to see a shrink and give him happy pills - ANTI DEPRESSANTS

  • FeebleGastro - 2013-03-11 10:41

    I think this whole ploy has FLIGHT RISK written all over it.

  • Michael Peters - 2013-03-11 10:50

    The lawyers will try anything to ease his bail. It is their job. The more they do the more money they make. Simple.

  • Lilitjie - 2013-03-11 11:00

    He might not be a flight risk, but he's a suicide risk...

      Jill.Robinson10 - 2013-03-11 16:25

      Raven Blue - NO - the world would be a better place without hateful people like YOU in it. Of course you have never done anything remotely sinful have you? You are as pure as white snow. It's people like you who wear blinkers, are judgmental, just plain vile and think that you speak for all others. You are why I agree with abortion.

  • WILLIAM2012 - 2013-03-11 11:41

    This is becoming very boring now!!!

  • Louise Whittingstall Barnard - 2013-03-11 12:07

    I hope his appeal is successful!! We have hardened criminals walking the streets in bail with no restrictions, who kill and rape again before their trial even starts! Stay strong Oscar, there are many people supporting you and hoping for a favorable outcome for you!!!

      Dennis Thulani Molife - 2013-03-12 03:19

      Would you be saying the same thing if you were realted to the Steenkamp?

  • Michael JM Britz - 2013-03-11 12:19

    Does any one of you here got no sins at all??? Cast the first stone!!! But again its if you are a Christian!

  • Michael JM Britz - 2013-03-11 12:22

    Do you know what a beast look like?

      Babalwa Mabona - 2013-03-11 17:07

      Which part in Oscar's statement makes sense to you, honest question, I'd really like to know?

  • gratton.rush - 2013-03-11 12:40

    To a place where a person is seen as innocent until proven guilty. If you lot had chirped this much about Dewani that's what a beast looks like

  • Avril Thomson-de Meuter - 2013-03-11 12:58

    regardless whether a fan or not why is it hard to fathom that he is grieving and remorseful. I have followed the bail hearings and newspaper articles and many it must be said have been ridiculous and trying to create more drama. People seem so angry at this crime and want to make him pay and suffer - but what about the thousands of horrific rapes and killings that have happened prior ? where was your anger and voice then ?

      DolceLucy - 2013-03-12 00:01

      Where was your anger and your voice? Can't say I've noticed you around!

  • Louise Whittingstall Barnard - 2013-03-11 13:30

    and YES I support him! what you going to do about it?

  • pete.stoter - 2013-03-11 15:29

    He has no confidence in his tone of voice and he is just a man that is almost like someone that is walking around in circles and doesn't know where he is per a friend in a why does he want to travel.i know,,,he wants to make a duck.

  • Nurse Helenk - 2013-03-11 15:37

    South Africa currently has extradition agreements with the following countries: Botswana Lesotho Malawi Swaziland United States of America Canada Australia Israel Egypt Algeria Nigeria China India As you can see, there are LOTS of lovely "holiday destinations" still open.

      Nurse Helenk - 2013-03-11 16:00

      Yes Raven... oh and I forgot to add Zimbabwe and the UK to the list above.

  • dedreiv - 2013-03-11 18:30

    Your imaginations are really something ... There are so many ways to get away if he wanted to...but he is here to face the action...he made a mistake. Will stand by you till the end oscar

      DolceLucy - 2013-03-11 23:59

      I don't understand how my comments get deleted but your brainless ones are allowed to stay.

  • DolceLucy - 2013-03-11 23:52

    Pretty proactive for someone on the verge of suicide. He is going against his WORD. Appalling.

  • Pfunzo Ddt Michael - 2013-03-12 10:15

    i don't understand people who thinks #Oscar case is not a real crime , like seriously guys lets face the fact

  • Debbie Gidish - 2013-03-13 22:50

    I believe that Oscar should be given the right to leave his uncles house and move around Johannesburg and out of the city and South Africa. Oscar does not have passports, where on earth will her run to? where will he hide a hole in a mine shaft until the trial is over? come on - i think that his conditions are a little too far fetched you see other high profile cases out on bail without "heavy" restrictions. For heavens sake i think that 90% of the population knows Oscar Pistorius do you think he has changed that drastically since his first appearance that no-one will recognize him. He is not on house arrest and at this moment he is being treated like an animal cooped up in a house, id also go out of my tree. I would believe that Oscar would need some track time to clear his head and yea i believe that he needs to go past his home to try and get some sort of closure about what happened!! and get some of his stuff to live with.. is that not in one of the basic constitutional rights?? you cannot leave someone with no clothing etc!! we have heard he wants to sell his home .. give him time to mourn the loss of Riva as he needs to and collect his belongings.. what do the police think he has hidden in there? they probably have ransacked the place already Oscar deserves humanitarian rights Let the man have some Should he want to run track let him If this was the USA things would be handled differently SAPS stuffed up the case innocent until proven guilty right give him his freedom

  • Debbie Gidish - 2013-03-13 23:02

    for G-ds sake give the man the opportunity to move out of Pretoria, to go get some closure at his house where everything happened and to collect his personal belongings that he needs. He is not on house arrest is he? i do not see any devises on his leg do i, i think that it is unfair that he is not allowed to move out of the province, take his parole officer with him if he has too. he needs to train doesn't he.. might keep him a bit more happier that what the press is saying although who would like to trust a word of what they are saying!! leave the guy alone. he is innocent until proven guilty. give the guy a break! how can you expect him to be coupled up in a home until June and not be allowed out? Its against human rights. Let him get closure about what happened. He also needs to understand it. He wants to sell the house give him privacy to do just that!! As for everyone pulling contracts with him now i think its foolish !! what happens if it turns out it was a mistake .. they will turn out to be a bunch of buffoons who will look stupid !! How many other suspects are out on bail who have such strict parole laws? Only Oscar .. Sorry I think its unfair .. Let him travel he is not a flight risk ... everyone knows his face unless he has changed it drastically and has 2 new legs .. this is disgusting !! the human rights department should be on top of this as well but they seem to have run away typical government all happy during 2012 Olympics and now as scarce as scare can be

  • Debbie Gidish - 2013-03-13 23:03

    I for one am a follower of Oscar Pistorius ... Innocent until Proven Guilty!!!

  • pages:
  • 1