Oscar Pistorius arrives in court

Murder accused Oscar Pistorius has arrived at the High Court in Pretoria.

Oscar Pistorius is escorted into the Pretoria High Court ahead of his trial for murder. Picture: Sebabatso Mosamo/EWN.

PRETORIA - Murder accused Oscar Pistorius has arrived at the High Court in Pretoria.

His arrival comes a few minutes after the arrival of Reeva's Steenkamp's mother June, who is being supported by friends and family. Her husband Barry was not well enough to travel to Pretoria, having suffered a minor stroke.

Proceedings are expected to get underway within minutes, with prosecutor Gerrie Nel reading out the charges and Pistorius entering his plea.

It is likely Pistorius will maintain his plea of not guilty as he did during his bail application.

The legal battle is being described as the trial of the decade.

The athlete will be accompanied by his close family and will, for the first time since the shooting, see June.

STATE-OF-THE-ART-TECH BEING USED

Just after 10am this morning, high-tech equipment will broadcast the Oscar Pistorius murder trial live from inside the High Court in Pretoria.

A sniffer dog has swept the building and traffic police are controlling access to the court.

Multichoice and Eyewitness News obtained a court order last week granting the media permission to broadcast the trial.

Pistorius shot and killed Steenkamp at his Pretoria home last year, and while he claims it was a case of mistaken identity, the state will argue it was murder.

Three small, unmanned high-definition spy cameras fitted in the back of the court, and to the left and right of the judge, will provide a full view of the room.

This state-of-the-art technology is a first that no other courtroom in the country has seen before.

The camera zoom and angles are managed from a control room outside the court, but the judge also has a switch to stop the feed if she believes it necessary.

The front rows of benches have been reserved for friends and family of both Pistorius and Steenkamp.

Three rows will seat 80 journalists, both local and international.

HUGE MEDIA PRESENCE OUTSIDE COURT

There's already a massive media presence outside the court with broadcast vans parked in zones allocated by metro police.

Certain parts of Madiba Street have been closed and traffic disruptions are expected throughout the day.

Gauteng traffic police say certain roads around the court will be closed ahead of the trial.

Motorists are advised to avoid Madiba Street between Paul Kruger, Bosman and Thabo Sehume Streets until 4pm.

Gauteng traffic police's Obed Sibasa said, "We urge motorists to use alternative roads to or from Pretoria as security will be tight."

'TOP-NOTCH' DEFENCE TEAM HIRED

The Paralympian's defence team has hired top local and international forensic experts to prove to the court that his version of events is the truth.

The results of forensic ballistic, post-mortem, cellphone and other scientific evidence could prove to be crucial to the case.

Pistorius's legal team will call its own witnesses to dispute the forensic evidence put forward by prosecutors.

Antony Altbeker, who wrote a book about the Fred van der Vyver and Inge Lotz case in which the forensics were crucial, believes this could entrench perceptions that wealth buys justice in South Africa.

"I think if someone without those resources was arrested in these circumstances, they would struggle to persuade anybody they were not guilty of murder and we wouldn't be talking about it, the case would be heard already."

Wits University law Professor Stephen Tuson, however, says money does make a difference.

"There's no doubt in my mind that money buys you a better quality of justice without exception.

Get all the latest developments on the EWN Oscar Pistorius portal here.