Pistorius spends his first night back in prison

Judge Thokozile Masipa sentenced Pistorius to six years in prison for the murder of Reeva Steenkamp.

FILE: Oscar Pistorius in the North Gauteng High Court. Picture: Pool.

JOHANNESBURG - Oscar Pistorius will be spending his first night back in prison after being handed a six-year jail term, which has been described by some legal experts as a 'fair sentence'.

Arguments were heard last month, for a second time, after Pistorius's culpable homicide conviction for the 2013 killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp was overturned to that of murder.

Judge Thokozile Masipa sentenced Pistorius to six years in prison, saying says the mitigating factors outweigh aggravating ones, which justify deviating from the minimum sentence of 15 years for murder.

WATCH: Pistorius handed six years for Steenkamp's murder

Advocate Mannie Witz says Masipa weighed up all the facts.

"The maximum sentences she could have imposed for a first offender was between 15 and 20 but she was definitely fair. I don't think there's a dispute on the State that they were substantial and compelling circumstances to deviate from the minimum sentence."

Lawyer Cliff Alexander says the legal fraternity was expecting a sentence of anything between six and eight years.

"I think six was sort of in the ballpark. There are a lot of people who are dissatisfied about it, particularly people in the national Prosecuting Authority as well as members of the public. I think all in all it is fair, given that Oscar Pistorius has already served 12 months."


The convicted murderers his legal team earlier confirmed they will not be appealing the sentence.

Pistorius claimed he thought she was an intruder when he fired four shots into a bathroom door.

Outside court, instructing attorney Andrew Fawcett told the media that Pistorius would not be appealing his sentence.

"Just from the defence team, we respect the decision by Judge Masipa and we will not be lodging any applications for leave to appeal going forward. Oscar will serve the sentence as handed down by Masipa."


This afternoon, the African National Congress Women's League (ANCWL) said it was shocked and disappointed with the sentence.

The league's Jackie Mofokeng said the outcome is shameful.

"It's actually an insult to women [and] an insult to the Steenkamp family. It's worrying that when listening to the judge, when she talks about public opinion, [one asks oneself] 'if it were in other countries where they have a jury, what was she going say?'"