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Judge rules most of Oscar “Blade Runner” Pistorius trial to be televised

By Agence France-Presse
Tuesday, February 25, 2014 7:03 EDT
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AFP/AFP/File - South African Olympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius appears on February 20, 2013 at the Magistrate Court in Pretoria
 
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A South African judge ruled Tuesday that most of Oscar Pistorius‘s trial for the 2013 murder of his girlfriend can be broadcast live, but not the Paralympian’s own testimony.

Judge Dunstan Mlambo said cameras would be allowed “to obtain a video and audio recording” of opening arguments, the evidence of state witnesses, closing arguments and the verdict and sentencing.

But cameras will not be allowed to film Pistorius, witnesses for the defence, or anyone else who objects to appearing on camera, he added.

A live audio broadcast will be allowed throughout the trial, which is due to open on Monday.

The ruling sets the stage for a court case that is likely to draw worldwide attention and which has already drawn parallels with the trial of disgraced American footballer OJ Simpson.

With the full glare of the world’s media bearing down upon him, the 27-year-old South African sprinter will appear in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria to hear one charge of murder and three firearms charges.

Pistorius is accused of the Valentine’s Day murder of his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp.

Pistorius admits to shooting 29-year-old Steenkamp four times through a locked toilet door, but claims he mistook her for an intruder.

Media outlets had applied to broadcast the trial via remote-controlled cameras inside the courtroom.

A 24-hour channel dedicated to his trial starts on South African network television on Sunday.

Pistorius’s legal team was fiercely opposed to the trial being broadcast, saying it would infringe on the athlete’s rights and distort proceedings.

It was not immediately clear if the defence would appeal Tuesday’s ruling.

Pistorius, whose legs were amputated below the knee when he was a young boy, rose to global fame sprinting on two fibre-optic blades.

Known as the “Blade Runner”, he ran against able-bodied athletes in the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP journalists cover wars, conflicts, politics, science, health, the environment, technology, fashion, entertainment, the offbeat, sports and a whole lot more in text, photographs, video, graphics and online.
 
 
 
 
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