Oscar Pistorius: South African court doubles sentence

Oscar Pistorius: South African court doubles sentence

Oscar Pistorius has had his sentence for killing girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp extended to 13 years and five months by South Africa's Supreme Court of Appeal today. It issued the ruling after the prosecution appealed his previous sentence of six years as too lenient.

Judge Willie Seriti, reading out the court's decision, said: "The sentence respect of murder is set aside and substituted with the following: The respondent is sentenced to imprisonment for a period of 13 years and five months".

The Paralympic athlete shot dead Reeva Steenkamp in the early hours of Valentine's Day in 2013 when he fired four times through the door of his bedroom toilet. He was imprisoned past year.

There was outrage across South Africa in 2014 when he was sentenced to five years for culpable homicide, which is essentially the same as manslaughter, and only served 10 months before he was released on house arrest.

State prosecutors said they would appeal, arguing there had been no mitigating circumstances to give such a sentence. "But, if one looks at what the law states, and given the fact that murder does carry the minimum sentence of 15 years in prison, I think the decision could be vindicated".

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Steenkamp's parents, Barry and June, were "emotional" as they watched Seriti deliver the verdict live on television at their home, family lawyer Tania Koen said. That conviction was overturned and replaced with a murder conviction by the Supreme Court in 2015.

"They just feel that their trust in the justice system has been confirmed this morning".

Pistorius' legal counsel said the claims that his client is not remorseful are false.

Oscar Pistorius in his murder trail at the High Court in Pretoria on 6 July 2016.

At the same time, Steenkamp's parents have sent their love to Jayde Panayiatou's parents after her husband, Chris, was sentenced to life in prison for her murder.