Thursday 18 December 2014

Pistorius selling home to 'cover legal costs'

Maria Tadeo

Published 21/03/2014 | 02:30

Oscar Pistorius arrives at court for his trial earlier this week
Oscar Pistorius arrives at court for his trial earlier this week
An aerial view of the home of Oscar Pistorius in a gated housing complex in Pretoria, South Africa.
Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp in 2012

Oscar Pistorius is selling his Pretoria home to cover the spiralling legal costs of his ongoing murder trial, his lawyer has confirmed.

The Paralympian blames the "unexpected" extension of his murder trial beyond the initial three-week period for which it was originally scheduled to take place.

Pistorius's lawyer Brian Webber said in a statement: "Due to the delay in finalising the trial, the decision to urgently dispose of his single biggest asset has had to be made."

"With the trial now already into its third week and as the prosecution is still leading evidence, it is clear that the legal process will last significantly longer than originally indicated by the state," he added.

Mr Webber said the athlete has not returned to his upscale mansion since Ms Steenkamp was shot and "cannot contemplate ever returning to live there again".

Estate agent Ansie Louw, who is handling the sale of the Silver Woods Estate property, said the mansion would be sold in a closed bid.

No asking price has been set but the agency expects to sell the mansion for "no less than five million rand" (€333,000). Bidding for the house kicked off earlier yesterday and it has already attracted interest from several buyers, according to the agency.

Pistorius was released on bail of one million rand (€66,619) in February last year. The athlete has been paying his own legal fees since he was arrested and charged with murder.

Prosecutors argue he intentionally shot and killed his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, following a domestic dispute. (© Independent News Service)

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