Oscar Pistorius Trial Prosecutor Calls for 10-Year Sentence

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PRETORIA, South Africa - Prosecutors tore into Oscar Pistorius at the athlete's sentencing hearing on Friday, saying that the sprinter had “shamelessly” used his disability in court and should spend at least a decade in jail for fatally shooting his girlfriend. In a blistering attack on the Olympic star, state lawyer Gerrie Nel said the double-amputee had once battled to compete alongside able-bodied athletes but was now trying to argue that jail was an unsuitable punishment because of the lack of facilities for the disabled. “The minimum term that society will be happy with will be 10 years imprisonment,” Nel told the athlete’s sentencing hearing. “This is a serious matter. The negligence borders on intent. Ten years is the minimum.''

Pistorius, who was convicted in September of culpable homicide — similar to manslaughter — for the killing of Reeva Steenkamp will be sentenced on Tuesday after Friday’s hearing was adjourned following final arguments. Judge Thokozile Masipa could issue a suspended jail sentence and a fine, order the 27-year-old Pistorius to go under house arrest, or send him to prison for up to 15 years.

Earlier Friday, Pistorius cried as defense lawyer Barry Roux said there was "no deviousness" and "no conscious unlawfulness" from the athlete. "The accused's actions were to some extent dominated by vulnerability and anxiety," Roux told the hearing. “He's lost everything. He was an icon in the eyes of South Africans."

Roux also revealed that the sprinter had run out of money. "He's not only broke, but he's broken. There is nothing left of this man," Roux said. He said that Pistorius "hasn't even the money to pay for legal expenses. He has nothing left."



- Cheryll Simpson and Alastair Jamieson