NPA: Pistorius’s Sentence Shockingly Lenient

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has met its two-week deadline to file an appeal against Oscar Pistorius’s six-year sentence for murder, which it termed “shockingly lenient”.

The former Paralympian was sentenced to six years behind bars earlier this month forkilling his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day, 2013.

Pistorius was initially convicted of culpable homicide and sentenced to five years behind bars, of which he served just one year.In a statement on Thursday, the NPA’s Bulelwa Makeke said the sentence was “disproportionate to the crime of murder committed, in casu, that is to say, shockingly too lenient, and has accordingly resulted in an injustice and has the potential to bring the administration of justice into disrepute”.

The conviction was however last year overturned by the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein, who found that he was guilty of murder.

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Trial judge Thokozile Masipa was ordered to hand down a fresh sentence for murder and sentenced Pistorius to six years after finding that there were reasons to deviate from the minimum sentence of 15 years for murder.

The NPA said it would file its papers on Thursday.The six-year sentence meant he would be eligible for parole after three years.

“We hope that this appeal will also clarify further the principles of sentencing, particularly in crime categories for which there are prescribed minimum sentences ordained by legislation, notwithstanding the fact that a judicial officer has a discretion to deviate from the minimum sentence after considering compelling circumstances”.

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