Oscar Pistorius release to house arrest delayed

Pistorius is serving a sentence for the killing of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp

“Blade Runner” Oscar Pistorius was due to have been released to house arrest in August after serving 10 months of a five-year sentence. Photograph: Reuters

“Blade Runner” Oscar Pistorius was due to have been released to house arrest in August after serving 10 months of a five-year sentence. Photograph: Reuters

 

South Africa’s parole review board has delayed the release of Paralympic gold medallist Oscar Pistorius from prison, where he is serving a sentence for killing his girlfriend, local television station eNCA reported on Monday.

The television station quoted sources on the review board for its report though there was no immediate confirmation from the board itself. A spokeswoman for the Pistorius family, Annelise Burgess, said she would issue a statement later.

Pistorius was due to have been released to house arrest in August after serving 10 months of a five-year sentence.

But South Africa’s justice minister, Michael Masutha, blocked his release, saying the law required the athlete to serve a sixth of his sentence. Masutha referred the case back to the parole board.

It was not immediately clear when a new parole hearing for Pistorius would be held.

Pistorius was found guilty in September 2014 of culpable homicide, the equivalent of manslaughter, after he fired four 9mm shots through a locked toilet door in 2013 killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day.

At a globally televised trial he argued that he had mistaken Steenkamp for a burglar.

Prosecutors are appealing the verdict, arguing it should be murder because Pistorius must have known when he fired that the person behind the door could be killed. The appeal is due to be heard on November 3rd.

A panel of five judges will hear the appeal. The judges could either reject the prosecution’s appeal, order a retrial or convict Pistorius of murder themselves, legal experts say.

Reuters