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Pistorius murder trial extended to mid-May

The murder trial of South African athlete Oscar Pistorius will now run until the middle of May after both sides agreed to an extension.

The trial has already overrun its initial timeframe with the prosecution not yet completing its case.

Pistorius denies intentionally shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day last year, saying he mistook her for an intruder.

Last week he said he would sell his home to fund legal costs.

The court in Guateng province said that the trial would continue until April 4, then adjourn for one week before resuming until May 16.

“All parties involved” had agreed to the dates, the court said.

The trial will enter its fourth week on Monday, with five more witnesses expected to be called by the prosecution.

The court had been adjourned to allow the defence team to finish preparing its case.

The trial was initially estimated to have taken three weeks in total, but so far that deadline has passed with only 18 witnesses out of a possible 107 have been heard.

There has been intense media interest in the case in South Africa and beyond because of Pistorius’ status as a national sporting hero.

He is a double amputee who holds six Paralympic medals and also competed in the 2012 Olympic Games.

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