South African judge grants permission for prosecutors to appeal the culpable homicide conviction of Paralympian Oscar Pistorius

Prosecutors can appeal the culpable homicide conviction of Paralympian Oscar Pistorius, a South African judge ruled on Wednesday.

In October the six-time Paralympic gold medallist was handed a five-year sentence for the culpable homicide (manslaughter) of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp who he shot on February 14, 2013.

But prosecutors said that verdict was wrong and seek a murder conviction. The athlete’s lawyers had opposed the appeal request.

Steenkamp died on Valentine’s Day last year after Pistorius fatally shot her through a toilet door. The athlete says he shot at the door thinking there was an intruder in his house and earlier this year he was cleared of murder charges after Judge Masipa stated that the prosecution had failed to prove premeditated murder.

The case will now go to South Africa’s Supreme Court of Appeal.

Known as the “Blade Runner” because of the carbon fibre prosthetic blades he would use when running, Pistorius made history at London 2012 when he became the first double amputee to run in both the Olympics and Paralympics.

The London 2012 Olympic 400m semi-finalist also won gold in the T44 400m at the London Paralympics, setting a Paralympic record in the process, as well as silver in the T44 200m and gold in the 4x100m relay.