OSCAR Pistorius has met the father of his ex-girlfriend Reena Steenkamp, for whose murder he was imprisoned, it turns out.
Pistorius, 35, was convicted of the murder of Reeva, 29, in 2015 and eventually sentenced to 13 years and five months in prison.
The athlete – known as the Blade Runner – was eligible for parole under South African law after serving half of his sentence.
To be eligible for release, prisoners must “acknowledge their actions and take responsibility”.
An attorney for Reena’s parents June and Barry Steenkamp said Pistorius was participating in a process known as the victim-offender dialogue.
Tania Koen confirmed that Barry Steenkamp and Pistorius “participated in a victim-perpetrator dialogue on June 22, 2022,” but said she would not comment further.
The Department of Correctional Services said Pistorius was transferred to a prison near the capital Pretoria, from an Eastern Cape prison, near where Steenkamp’s parents live.
Spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said Pistorius will continue to serve his sentence, as participating in the victim-offender dialogue does not equate to the end of the sentence or parole.
Late last year, it emerged that Pistorius had sent a “disturbing” letter to the Steenkamps.
They described the Paralympic gold medalist’s letter as “like tearing a plaster from a wound”.
The couple’s lawyer, Tania Coen, does not want to reveal the contents of the letters.
“It was emotionally quite frightening for them. They didn’t know it was coming and it was sent to me by his lawyer.”
The Steenkamps had said they want a face-to-face meeting with Pistorius before he is eligible for parole, as is their right under the victim-offender dialogue policy.
They have previously said that they want to challenge Pistorius as to why he shot their daughter.
“Yes, they want to do that face to face,” says Koen.
“Barry has been saying for years that he wants to meet Oscar and he has questions to ask.
“They are emotionally unprepared, but they are willing to meet Oscar.
“They accept that the day will come when Oscar is eligible for parole and they will give their input.”
A conditional hearing for Pistorius was scheduled for October 2021 and was then canceled, in part because a meeting between Pistorius and the Steenkamps had not been arranged.
Koen criticized the way they had been treated, saying: “What was also very disturbing was the disregard for their emotional well-being.
“They had to find out that the probation commission had already set a date for parole and never informed them about it.”
The multiple Paralympic champion was initially found guilty of wrongful death – a felony akin to manslaughter – for killing Reeva.
The Paralympic shot her four times through his bathroom door on Valentine’s Day 2013.
He claimed at his trial that it was a tragic accident and mistook her for a dangerous intruder.
But the prosecutors appealed the manslaughter finding and were convicted of murder.
Pistorius was sentenced to six years in prison for murder, but prosecutors again appealed what they called a shockingly light sentence for murder.
Subsequently, the Supreme Court doubled his sentence in 2017.
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