Oscar Pistorius will have another chance at parole on Friday after nearly a decade in prison

Cape Town, South Africa (AFP) – Oscar Pistorius He will get a second chance at parole at a hearing on Friday after he was wrongly sentenced Not eligible for early release From prison in March.

South Africa’s corrections service said in a statement sent to The Associated Press on Monday that the parole board will consider the former Olympic runner’s case again this week and decide “whether the prisoner is suitable for social integration or not.”

Pistorius, a world-renowned amputee athlete who broke barriers by competing on carbon fiber running blades at the 2012 London Olympics, has been in prison since late 2014 for the shooting death of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. He was initially convicted of culpable homicide, a crime similar to manslaughter, for shooting Steenkamp multiple times through a locked toilet cubicle door at his home in the South African capital, Pretoria, in the predawn hours of Valentine’s Day 2013.

His conviction was upgraded to murder and he was eventually sentenced to 13 years and five months in prison after a series of appeals by the prosecution. Serious criminals in South Africa must serve at least half of their sentence before becoming eligible for parole.

Pistorius’ case and his eligibility for parole have been complicated by appeals from prosecutors, who initially appealed his murder conviction and then his six-year sentence for murder, which they described as shockingly lenient.

The Supreme Court of Appeal eventually ruled in 2017 that Pistorius should serve South Africa’s minimum sentence of 15 years for the murder, but took into account the year and seven months he had already served for the guilty murder when it sentenced him to 13 years and five months.

but, The court made an error By not counting the other time Pistorius served while the murder conviction was being appealed, meaning he was actually eligible for parole in March when he was told at his first hearing he would only be eligible in August 2024.

Pistorius’ lawyers He took up his case To the country’s Supreme Constitutional Court. The decision to grant Pistorius another parole hearing on Friday is an effective admission of the appeals court’s error.

It is not guaranteed that Pistorius will receive early release. The parole board takes A number of factors consideration, including his behavior and disciplinary record in prison, his mental health and the possibility of him committing a further offence.

He can be released on full parole or placed on day parole, where he is allowed to live and work in the community but must return to prison at night.

Pistorius was once one of the world’s most admired athletes and one of its most colorful sporting stories. He was born with a congenital condition that led to his legs being amputated below the knee as a child, but he pursued track and won several Paralympic titles on running blades. He is the only amputee to participate in the Olympic Games.

Known as “Blade Runner,” he was at the height of his fame when Steenkamp was killed months after the London Olympics. At his murder trial, he claimed he shot Steenkamp, ​​a 29-year-old model, by mistake with his licensed 9mm handgun because he believed she was a dangerous intruder hiding in his bathroom in the middle of the night.

Pistorius turns 37 on Wednesday and has not been seen for nearly a decade, although there have been occasional glimpses of his time in prison.

He was injured in an altercation with another intimate over the prison phone in 2017. A year earlier, he received treatment for injuries to his wrists, which his family denied were self-harm and said were caused by a fall in his cell.


IP Africa News: https://apnews.com/hub/africa

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