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Pistorius successful in bail conditions appeal

ESPN staff
March 28, 2013 « Impressive Selby powers past Walden | Chartbeat test »

Oscar Pistorius has succeeded in his bid to have his bail conditions lowered.

The Paralympian, who was not in court for the bail appeal, is charged with the premeditated murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp and was granted bail at a hearing last month.

There were a series of conditions of bail set, but Pistorius' legal team returned to court to ask for them to be relaxed so he can travel under certain conditions. His defence team argued that he needed to travel to compete and earn a living.

Barry Roux, representing Pistorius, said at Thursday's hearing that the only reason the defence agreed to the conditions was because it was late in the day after a long hearing.

The defence and prosecution arguments lasted less than an hour, after which Judge Bam adjourned to consider his verdict.

He returned to say that the High Court can only interfere in bail conditions set in a lower court if the magistrate was found to be wrong, at which point he outlined a number of errors in the initial ruling.

Bam said Magistrate Nair was wrong not to grant Pistorius his passport. And he also said the conditions served no purpose.

He said he could see no reason why Pistorius should not be allowed to leave the country if invited to compete abroad. But he did stress that the athlete must provide the state with a copy of his itinerary weeks before he plans to travel and must also return his passport to the court within 24 hours of returning to South Africa.

Judge Bam has also removed Pistorius' probation officer and the random drug and alcohol testing that was imposed has also been removed. He has also been granted permission to return to his home where Steenkamp was killed.

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