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Oscar verdict on September 11

Pretoria: The murder trial of Oscar Pistorius wrapped up on Friday, with the prosecution making a final plea for the South African athlete to “face the consequences” of shooting dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

Justice Thokozile Masipa, only the second black woman to be appointed a high court judge in post-apartheid South Africa, will now analyse more than 4,000 pages of evidence before delivering her verdict on September 11.

Double amputee Pistorius, 27, once a national icon for reaching the pinnacle of sport, is accused of murdering Steenkamp, a law graduate and model, at his home in Pretoria on Valentine’s Day last year.

The defence says Pistorius, nicknamed the ‘Blade Runner’ because of his carbon-fibre prosthetic running legs, shot Steenkamp through a locked toilet door in self-defence, believing she was an intruder, and that therefore he should be acquitted.

State prosecutor Gerrie Nel has spent the trial, which began in March, portraying Pistorius as a gun-obsessed hothead who deliberately shot Steenkamp as she was taking refuge in the toilet after an argument.        (Reuters)