Judge Thokozile has rejected the State’s appeal over Pistorius 6-year murder sentence. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) had earlier announced its intention to appeal the sentence.
Thokozile has not been a South African sweetheart ever since the Pistorius case started.
On the initial charge of culpable homicide Oscar Pistorius was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment. After the Supreme Court appeal, Pistorius was re-sentenced to 6 years imprisonment for killing Reeva Steenkamp.
On both cases, South Africans strongly smelt leniency on the part of the Judge.
Before the July verdict, Pistorius faced the traditional 15-year jail term for killing his girl friend, Reeva Steenkamp. This was later not the case as Pistorius got less than half of the anticipated sentence. This left the state and indeed the people shocked.
In an official statement released by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA),
“The sentence of six years imprisonment, in all the circumstances, is disproportionate to the crime of murder committed (and) shockingly too lenient.”
It was speculated that the NPA would appeal the sentence. However, Judge Thokozile thinks there is no point in doing so. Thus, has denied the state bid for leave to appeal with costs.
“I am not persuaded that there are reasonable prospects of success for an appeal. The application for leave to appeal against the sentence is dismissed with costs.”
We will recall that during the sentencing in July, the Judge had reminded the court that “our courts are a court of law, not courts of public opinion.”
In favor of the Judge’s stance, Barry Roux has argued that Pistorius sentencing is far from lenient. He says Pistorius has served a part of the initial sentence and was sentenced again.
This, coupled with the fact that the Paralympic champ has lost his fortune over the case, Roux thinks Thokozile’s sentence is just appropriate.
Roux thinks it is a slight on the Judge for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) to appeal Thokozile’s sentencing.
On the reverse, Prosecutor Gerrie Nel thinks it is not an insult in any way for the sentence to be appealed. Nel says that deviating from the 15-year jail term as demanded was rather very shocking. He believes another court may come to a different sentence.