Bid to challenge `shockingly lenient` Oscar Pistorius sentence rejected

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

Johannesburg [South Africa], Aug 26 (ANI): A judge in South Africa on Friday rejected state prosecutors' bid to challenge the six-year jail term imposed on disgraced former Paralympian Oscar Pistorius for murdering his girlfriend. "I am not persuaded that there are reasonable prospects of success for an appeal. The application for leave to appeal against the sentence is dismissed with costs," Judge Thokozile Masipa was quoted as saying by News24 in the High Court here. Pistorius began his sentence in July after the High Court in Pretoria sentenced him to six years in jail for the murder of his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in 2013. While delivering the verdict in a story that has attracted intense worldwide attention, Judge Masipa said she had considered both aggravating and mitigating factors, such as rehabilitation and murder, and concluded that the latter outweighed the former. In December last year, Pistorius, famously known as the Blade Runner, was found guilty of murder after the Supreme Court overturned his previous culpable homicide conviction following the state's successful attempt in challenging the verdict. Pistorius has always denied deliberately killing his girlfriend and claimed that he mistook her for an intruder before shooting her dead with four bullets fired through a closed toilet door. He will be eligible for parole once he completes half to two-thirds of his sentence. Reflecting on the development, Barry Roux, the ex-athlete's lawyer, stated that the State was showing a lot of prejudice towards Pistorius. Meanwhile, Prosecutor Gerrie Nel remarked that deviating from the prescribed 15-year minimum sentence for murder 'induces a sense of shock', adding that the current sentence was 'shockingly lenient'. According to Nel, Pistorius' claim that there was an intruder in his bathroom should not be considered as a mitigating factor. (ANI)