Oscar Pistorius’ request for parole re-examined this Friday

By Le Figaro with AFP

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Oscar Pistorius (in 2016). imago sportfotodienst / Imago / Panoramic

The former South African Paralympic champion is due to appear this Friday before a commission in the prison near Pretoria, where he is currently detained.

Former South African Paralympic champion Oscar Pistorius hopes to benefit from parole on Friday, ten years after the murder of his girlfriend, in a case that captivated the world.

The former athlete, now 37 years old, must appear in the morning before an ad hoc commission in the prison near Pretoria where he is currently detained. According to the prison services, this commission will determine whether the convict “is suitable or not for social reintegration”. If approved, his actual release could, however, take timethe procedure to determine the conditions of a possible early release may require up to a month.

In March, a previous request for parole was rejected. The prison services had estimated, to everyone’s surprise, that Pistorius, sentenced to more than 13 years in prison, had not served the minimum period of detention required.

In South Africa, prisoners can be granted early release after serving half their sentence. Pistorius having been convicted at first instance, then several times on appeal, the prison services estimated that, according to a count starting from the date of his last conviction, he had not served the minimum time.

But the Constitutional Court contradicted this version, ruling last month that the counting should begin on the date of his first placement in detention.

Pistorius’ lawyer hopes for immediate release

On the night of February 13-14, 2013, Oscar Pistorius shot his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, ​​29, four times through the closed bathroom door of her bedroom in his ultra-secure Pretoria home. . He was arrested in the early morning.

Rich, famous, the six-time Paralympic champion was crowned with glory at the time. A year earlier, he entered sporting legend by lining up with the able-bodied in the 400 meters at the London Olympic Games, a first for a double leg amputee. “Blade Runner”, as he is nicknamed in reference to his carbon prostheses, pleads not guilty, claiming to have believed in the presence of an intruder.

During his first instance trial in 2014, broadcast live on television, the former champion appeared in tears, vomiting while reading the autopsy report. He was sentenced to five years in prison for manslaughter. The prosecution is demanding a reclification as murder. Pistorius appears at his appeal trial on his stumps. He is sentenced to six years of imprisonment.

The prosecution considers the sentence still insufficient. In 2017, the Supreme Court of Appeal finally sentenced him to 13 years and 5 months in prison. Abandoned by his sponsors, ruined, the fallen idol sells his house to pay his lawyers. As part of his request for release, Oscar Pistorius met Reeva Steenkamp’s parents last year. A mandatory step aimed, according to the authorities, at ensuring that detainees “recognize the harm caused”.

The couple, however, opposed his request for release in March: “I don’t believe his story”, said the mother, June Steenkamp, ​​who will not be present on Friday. Reeva Steenkamp’s father died in September. The procedure was “very emotionally taxing”stressed to AFP the lawyer for the Steenkamp family, Tania Koen, adding that she was convinced that the commission “will exercise discernment”.

Pistorius’ lawyer, Conrad Dormehl, told him he was counting on a “immediate release”given the delay already accumulated after the imbroglio on his client’s eligibility for conditional release.

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