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'Pistorius should testify in mitigation of sentence'

It’s not yet clear whether Oscar Pistorius will want to subject himself to cross-examination.

Oscar Pistorius waits in the dock at the High Court in Pretoria on 21 October 2014. Picture: Pool.
Reeva Steenkamp,Oscar Pistorius trial,Oscar Pistorius in court,Oscar Pistorius sentencing,Oscar Pistorius judgment,Oscar Pistorius court appearance,Reeva Steenkamp remembered
Local

PRETORIA - With just weeks away from Oscar Pistorius’s sentencing proceedings starting, it’s being questioned whether the Para-Olympian will testify in a bid to secure a lesser sentence than the prescribed 15-years in prison.

The Constitutional Court this week rejected his application to challenge the Supreme Court of Appeals decision to set aside his culpable homicide conviction.

Pistorius shot and killed his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day three years ago, he claims he thought she was an intruder.

Attorney Ulrich Roux says Pistorius’s legal team should put him in the witness box to testify in mitigation of sentence.

“If he’s really remorseful for what happened and truly shows remorse and truly shows the court what effect this tragedy has had on his life then he should be able to withstand cross-examination if testifies honestly and I think that would be a good step.”

It remains to be seen if Pistorius will want to subject himself to prosecutor Gerrie Nel’s fierce cross-examination which had him in tears on several occasions during the trial.

Roux says the year Pistorius spent in prison and the programmes he went through will count in his favour.

 

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