Oscar Pistorius trial: Judge Masipa grants two-week adjournment
The judge in the Oscar Pistorius murder trial has ruled that proceedings will adjourn for two weeks on Thursday, and resume 5 May following a request from the prosecution.
Yesterday, chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel requested a two-week adjournment citing prior commitments and Easter holidays. The athlete's defence did not object to his request.
Granting his application, Judge Thokozile Masipa said the trial, which started on 3 March and was estimated to run for three weeks, has made considerable progress and both legal teams have made themselves available "way beyond the time that was initially estimated".
Judge Masipa told the court she considered the consequences for Pistorius, before adding "the postponement is only for seven working days" and "that can hardly cause the accused any prejudice, especially since he is out on bail".
Pistorius was released on bail of one million rand (£73,000) in February last year.
Judge Masipa urged counsel to continue working on their cases through the holidays ahead of their closing arguments, noting the record runs over 2,000 pages, much of which is "technical" evidence from expert witnesses.
Defence counsel Barry Roux told Pretoria's High Court he will call between 14 and 17 witnesses, and expects to finish presenting evidence by mid-May.
Pistorius is accused of murdering girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp following a domestic dispute in the early hours of Valentine's Day last year. He claims he shot and killed his girlfriend in a case of mistaken identity, thinking she was an intruder.
The case continues.
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