Appeal against Oscar's 'lenient' sentence without merit - defence

2016-08-18 18:03
Oscar Pistorius (File)

Oscar Pistorius (File) (Foto24)

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Cape Town - Oscar Pistorius’ defence team says that the State’s decision to appeal his murder sentence is without merit.

The matter is expected to be heard next Friday.

According to the defence, the State’s application is not only without merit, but is "also exposed to be inappropriate".

He was initially convicted of culpable homicide and received a five-year sentence, but the Supreme Court of Appeal last year ruled that the conviction should be murder and that he should be re-sentenced.

Judge Thokozila Masipa then sentenced him to six years in jail.

The defence said the State’s appeal was an insult to Masipa’s judgment and that it had ignored all the circumstances considered during Pistorius’ trial.

It further stated that Pistorius had already served a year behind bars, as well as a period under correctional supervision, and "further restrictions on his liberty in terms of severe bail conditions".

The National Prosecuting Authority last month confirmed it would will appeal Pistorius's six-year jail sentence, describing it as "shockingly too lenient".

Pistorius was sentenced on July 6 for fatally shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day in 2013.

The defence said the State filed its application a day late after the 14-day period for applications for leave to appeal, and as a consequence "evokes a sense that a continuation of this matter is inimical to the interest of justice, patently unfair and that enough is enough".

Following the State’s decision to appeal the sentence, Reeva’s parents expressed their support for the move by prosecutor Gerrie Nel and his team.

The Steenkamps, in a statement at the time, said they had not influenced the State’s decision to appeal.

Read more on:    reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  pretoria  |  pistorius trial  |  crime

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