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Thu Jul 24 19:44:17 SAST 2014

Pistorius weighs up asking for 'easier' bail

SIPHO MASOMBUKA | 25 February, 2013 00:36
Oscar Pistorius leaves court after he was granted R1-million bail on Friday by Pretoria chief magistrate Desmond Nair. He is accused of murdering his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp
Image by: : SIPHIWE SIBEKO/REUTERS

Murder accused Oscar Pistorius is "considering" whether to approach the Pretoria High Court to ease his strict bail conditions.

Pretoria chief magistrate Desmond Nair released the Paralympian sprinter on R1-million bail on Friday.

He ordered that Pistorius not return to his home, not contact witnesses, hand in his guns and passports and check in with police twice a week.

Pistorius's lawyer, Kenny Oldwadge, said yesterday they were considering their position.

"I have no comment on that at the present moment, unfortunately. We are still considering our position and this is really as much as I can say right now."

Oldwadge was tight- lipped on which specific conditions were undesirable.

He said the 2012 Paralympics 400m gold medallist spent his first weekend of freedom - after eight days in the holding cells at Brooklyn police station - in Pretoria East with family.

The internationally renowned athlete was arrested on February 14 for allegedly fatally shooting his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, in his multimillion-rand Silver Woods Country Estate home in Pretoria East.

Pistorius's bail conditions include that he should not return to the scene of the crime.

The court also ordered him not to contact state witnesses and he is required to report to the Brooklyn police station twice a week. He is not allowed to touch alcohol or drugs and is subject to constant supervision. He is in constant contact with his court-appointed officer to assess his state of mind.

Oldwadge did not comment on Pistorius's state of mind, but said they "did not need to go to court" for Pistorius to go for counselling.

Shavana Mushwana of Vuma Reputation Management, the publicists handling Pistorius's public information, said it would not divulge his whereabouts save to say he "spent a quiet weekend with family at his paternal uncle's house in Pretoria".

Journalists, photographers and TV camera crews spent the weekend camping outside the Waterkloof house of his uncle Arnold Pistorius.

As detectives reportedly moved to find a possible motive for the fatal shooting, it also emerged that Pistorius's brother, Carl, was facing charges of culpable homicide after a 2008 road accident that left a female motorcyclist dead.

Vuma Reputation Management said the state had earlier withdrawn the charges but these were later reinstated.

Quoting Oldwadge, the company said: "There was no doubt that Carl is innocent and the charge will be challenged in court."

Mushwana said Carl regretted the accident and his blood sample taken after the accident had tested negative for alcohol.

He is due in court at the end of March.

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Thu Jul 24 19:44:17 SAST 2014 ::