Oscar Pistorius sentencing live: Watch as the judge hears closing statements

Watch live: Oscar Pistorius' sentencing

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The Independent Online

Today sees the former Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius return to court for the fifth day of his sentencing hearing, following the death of his former girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp last year on Valentine's Day.

Judge Thokozile Masipa will today hear the closing arguments from the defence and prosecution teams, before deciding on the severity of Pistorius' sentence.

On February 14 2013, Pistorius shot 29-year-old Steenkamp three times through the bathroom door of the couple’s home in Johannesburg.

Pistorius denied that he was guilty of murder throughout his trial, and told the court that he had shot Steenkamp in the belief that she was an intruder

The athlete was cleared of murder last month by Judge Thokozile Masipa and was instead handed the lesser charge of culpable homicide.

Judge Masipa agreed that Pistorius had acted “negligently” but concluded this had been carried out in the "belief that there was an intruder".

Live video feed courtesy of enca.com/oscartrial

The crime of culpable homicide can carry with it a sentence of 15 years behind bars; however, Judge Masipa could decide to suspend the sentence or merely impose a fine.

Thursday's fourth day of sentencing was overshadowed by reports that Oscar Pistorius' sister, Aimee Pistorius, had left the courtroom in floods of tears after claiming that Mike Schultz, a man described in media reports as a “self-confessed killer” had mouthed obscenities at her.

According to Aimee Pistorius, Schultz, who was reportedly at court to give support to the Steenkamp family had mouthed the words “F*** you” at Aimee Pistorius as the courtroom listened to the evidence.

Schultz, who reportedly admitted to the killing of businessman Brett Kebble in 2005, later dismissed the claim, calling the Pistorius family "a bunch of liars".

Steenkamp's family has been adamant throughout the trial and sentencing that they are keen for Pistorius to be handed a heavy punishment.

In a BBC interview yesterday, Steenkamp's cousin, Kim Martin, said that Pistorius "needed to pay for what he had done" and that she hoped that Pistorius would receive "sufficient punishment".

 

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