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Oscar Pistorius is reportedly being considered for parole as he has effectively served half of his 15-year prison sentence.
After a lengthy series of trials, former South African athlete Pistorius was convicted of the February 2013 murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.
That verdict and the final sentencing was only reached in November 2017, by which time he had already served time at first the Kgosi Mampuru prison, and then under house arrest.
Pistorius has since been moved to the low security Atteridgeville Correctional Facility, where his life has been a stark contrast to the one he lived in the outside world.
The former Paralympic sprint champion is said to have given up all exercise, which combined with a new habit of smoking, has made him unrecognisable.
He has often been visited by his former school headteacher Bill Schroder, who said that Pistorius has grown a bushy beard and looked larger than before.
As well as smoking, another new hobby he has taken up is preaching to his fellow inmates.
His father, Henke, toldThe Times: "He can feel he is making a difference to others who really needed a difference to be made – to give their lives meaning, purpose and some hope.
"As a result, things have also improved for him.
"It's a wonderful story. They are hardcore chaps, the problem people in the prison, but now they are all meeting to follow the Bible once or twice a week."
The Atteridgeville Correctional Facility houses few murderers and Pistorius is afforded special privileges, according to reports.
IT is claimed he has his own private cell which features an ensuite bathroom so he has no need to mix with other prisoners.
In addition, Pistorius is said to have an area where he can grow his own vegetables.
The prison is surrounded by vegetation and he also spends time working in the gardens or on the orchards.
That can all be soon coming to an end, though, with Steenkamp’s parents having been contacted about his potential parole.
They have reportedly been approached for the Victim-Offender-Dialogue. This would involve a meeting between the family and Pistorius.
Parole is something which his old teacher Mr Schroder revealed Pistorius is scared of.
He said in 2020: "He is more concerned about forgiveness than actually getting out on parole. In fact, he has a real fear about getting parole as he knows there’ll be a backlash."
- Oscar Pistorius
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