Pistorius’s lawyers to fight for bail

Oscar Pistorius appears in the Pretoria Magistrates Court. Picture: AFP.
Eyewitness News' Reinart Toerien takes a look at the rise and fall of Oscar Pistorius.
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PRETORIA - Paralympian Oscar Pistorius's defence team will on Tuesday argue the schedule of crime he faces and then provide argument as to why he should be granted bail.

The athlete was arrested at his Pretoria East home on Thursday after killing his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp (29).

Pistorius (26), known as the Blade Runner, has been detained at the Brooklyn Police Station since Friday.

A top criminal lawyer has told Eyewitness News that fighting for bail on a Schedule (6) offence of the Criminal Procedure Act is considered a formidable burden on the defence.

In this case, the onus is on the accused to prove exceptional circumstances to be released on bail.

The attorney says examples of exceptional circumstances include the state having a weak case, or the accused suffering from a terminal illness.

If it is deemed a Schedule (5) offence, the accused has to prove that the general public or witnesses are not at risk,he will not abscond and that his release will not result in public unrest.

The state has indicated it will argue for Pistorius to be charged in terms of Schedule (6), and it will show the murder was premeditated.

The Blade Runner’s family has proclaimed his innocence in “the strongest terms”.

A private memorial service will be held for the slain model in her hometown of Port Elizabeth today.

‘MUSICAL CHAIRS’

While Pistorius's legal team fights for his bail, the media is expected to fight for a front row seat in court.

The Justice Department said it has space for only 26 media representatives inside the courtroom.

The department said an accreditation process will be set up, but it is unclear what criteria will be used to determine whether access is granted.

Pistorius's case has attracted significant global interest, but it appears the courtrooms are just too small to accommodate all media representatives.

The Blade Runner gained international stardom when he made history as the first disabled person to participate in the Olympic Games.