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Thu Apr 17 08:58:58 SAST 2014

Pistorius family disputes murder charge

Sapa | 15 February, 2013 16:55
Oscar Pistorius is escorted by police during his court appearance in Pretoria February 15, 2013.
Image by: STRINGER / Reuters

Oscar Pistorius' family and management company on Friday disputed claims that the paralympian had murdered his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

"The alleged murder is disputed in the strongest terms," the family and In-Site Athlete Management said in a statement issued by a public relations company in London.

"These are now live and active legal proceedings, which must be allowed to take their course through the process of proper investigation by the police, evidence-gathering, and through the local South African judicial system."

Pistorius was formally charged on Friday with the murder of Steenkamp.

The celebrity paralympian would spend the weekend in jail after his bail application was postponed by the Pretoria Magistrate's Court to Tuesday.

He was arrested on Thursday after Steenkamp, a model, law graduate, and participant in the Tropika Island of Treasure television show, was shot dead in his home.

Pistorius spent Thursday night in jail and will be held at Brooklyn police station in Pretoria until his next court appearance.

His family and In-Site Athlete Management said: "[Oscar] has made it very clear that he would like to send his deepest sympathies to the family of Reeva.

"He would also like to express his thanks through us today for all the messages of support he has received -- but as stated, our thoughts and prayers today should be for Reeva and her family -- regardless of the circumstances of this terrible, terrible tragedy."

They said other statements would be issued as the matter developed.

"In these circumstances I am sure you appreciate it is very difficult to answer any more specific questions."

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Thu Apr 17 08:58:59 SAST 2014 ::