Pistorius planned to buy more guns - dealer

2014-03-17 13:53
(Siphiwe Sibeko, AP)

(Siphiwe Sibeko, AP)

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Pretoria - "Blade Runner" Oscar Pistorius ordered six firearms from a dealer but cancelled the transaction a month after he shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, the North Gauteng High Court heard on Monday.

Testifying as Pistorius's murder trial entered its third week, firearm dealer Sean Rens told the court: "He had a great love and enthusiasm for them."

Rens said he met Pistorius in May 2012 and sold him a Smith and Wesson 500 revolver.

When they met, Pistorius had only owned a single firearm - a 9mm pistol.

But in the following months, the disabled Olympic athlete bought several more firearms from Rens, who said he checked that his client had a licence and competency card and kept a record of his training.

"Over a number of months he bought a number of firearms," Rens said.

Guns order

Under questioning from State prosecutor Gerrie Nel, Rens said as part of his competency test, Pistorius had completed a questionnaire that presented the applicant with various burglary scenarios and asked whether they would justify the use of lethal force.

Pistorius answered no in each case, except in the hypothesis where two armed men advance on him in his house with no security gate between himself and the intruders.

Nel then presented Rens with a copy of an invoice, and he confirmed that Pistorius had ordered:

- a rifle or carbine vector LM6, which Rens said was a civilian version of the semi-automatic assault rifle that South Africa's police or military use;
- a Winchester shotgun;
- a Mossberg Maverick shotgun;
- a Smith and Wesson revolver .38 special, the smallest revolver as opposed to the largest, the Smith and Wesson 500;
- a Mossberg semi-automatic self-loading shotgun and
- another self-loading rifle.

However, the firearms were never handed over to Pistorius because he cancelled the order about a month after "an incident", Rens said, referring to Steenkamp's death on Valentine's Day last year.

Pistorius has pleaded not guilty to premeditated murder, contending that he shot the blonde swimsuit model through a locked bathroom door in his Pretoria home in the belief that an intruder was hiding behind it.

Dozens of pictures of scene

The State is arguing that he killed her after the couple had a row.

On Monday, the court also heard testimony from a police photographer who commented on dozens of pictures he took at Pistorius's home hours after the shooting, including one showing a blood-streaked toilet bowl and another showing blood splatter above the headboard of his bed.

Warrant Officer Barend van Staden said he had compiled 15 albums of photographs of the scene, and for more than an hour of questioning, he recited the time at which each photograph was taken, and explained the reason why he had taken it.

There were several photographs of a duvet in different positions because he had seen drops of blood on it and opened it to look for more stains, Van Staden said.

He had also taken photographs of Pistorius in a pair of blood-stained shorts, with more blood smeared on his prosthetic legs.

Restaurant incident

Van Staden was the third policeman to take the stand after Pistorius's lawyer last week suggested that investigating officers had contaminated the scene and tampered with evidence.

On Monday, Nel in his questioning of this witness appeared to give the police the opportunity to explain why objects had been moved around in the accused's home in the hours following the shooting.

In addition to murder, the State has also charged Pistorius with contraventions of the Firearms Control Act.

Witnesses have testified that he set off a friend's Glock pistol under a table at a Johannesburg restaurant in January 2013, and then asked the friend - Darren Fresco - to take responsibility because he did not want negative publicity.

Fresco also told the court that on 30 September 2012 Pistorius had shocked him by firing a shot through the open sunroof of a car while they were driving through Modderfontein.
Read more on:    gerrie nel  |  reeva steenkamp  |  oscar pistorius  |  pistorius trial  |  crime

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