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Front Pages: South Africa's papers report Pistorius case

As there are no trial juries in South Africa, papers are not fearful of prejudicing proceedings.
Feb 20th 2013, 9:44 AM 8,536 16

THERE HAS BEEN some criticism aimed at the South African media in recent days over its coverage of the death of Reeva Steenkamp and the subsequent bail hearing of Oscar Pistorius.

Steenkamp was shot dead in the early hours of 14 February and the 26-year-old athlete stands accused of pre-meditated murder in relation to her death.

The Paralympian and one-time darling of South Africa insists the shooting was not intentional and he fired because he believed there was an intruder in his Pretoria home.

Newspapers in the country are torn between portraying Pistorius as a cold-blooded murderer and a lover caught up in a tragedy.

Beeld goes with the love story, leading with a line from the defendant’s sworn statement yesterday: “We were in love.”

Cape Argus also lets Pistorius tell his version of events of Valentine’s Day morning.

However, the Cape Times frames the athlete with a damning headline.

The Daily Dispatch was more sympathetic.

There was no middle-ground for Sowetan.

Port Elizabeth newspaper, The Herald, was the only one to lead with Reeva Steenkamp’s funeral and her family’s grief.

Other titles were a mixed bag.

Reeva Steenkamp death: Pistorius back in court for day two of bail hearing

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Sinead O'Carroll


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