Oscar Pistorius trial: Day 21 review

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Oscar Pistorius was cross-examined again today.
Oscar Pistorius was cross-examined again today..

Oscar Pistorius was accused by the prosecution of becoming emotional due to getting his defences mixed-up as the athlete's murder trial continued in Pretoria today.

On another gruelling day of cross-examination led by Gerrie Nel, there was precious little sympathy - as you might expect - from the chief prosecutor as he continually challenged Mr Pistorius' emotions and his version of events.

"Today I'm going to prove your version of events is untrue. That you tailored your version, concocted your story. Your version is so improbable that it cannot reasonably possibly be true," Nel told the accused.

The Olympic and Paralympic track star - who stands accused of the pre-meditated murder of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp as well as three further charges relating to firing a firearm in public and illegal possession of ammunition, all of which he denies - insists that he heard a noise before opening fire on his locked bathroom door on the night in question, claiming that he shot out of fear.

Nel countered this argument by suggesting that Mr Pistorius knew exactly what he was doing and had fired at Ms Steenkamp, to which he simply replied: "It's not true my lady."

Evidently undeterred, Nel continued to press the accused. "I'm going to argue that you got emotional because you got your defences mixed up," he said, a claim that Mr Pistorius denied.

The prosecution also went on to claim that the position of Ms Steenkamp with her right hip against the door meant that she could only have been stood behind it talking to Mr Pistorius at the time of the shooting.

"All the screams and shouts were at her and she fled for her life. Why would she be there if she was not talking to you? My case is that he knows that he shot her while she was talking to him," Nel said.

The athlete was also pressed on apparent inconsistencies in his evidence.

"When my bail was done, I was in a holding cell, I was on medication, I was traumatised - it was not made clear to me that it was exhaustive," he replied.

If found guilty of murder, Mr Pistorius could face life imprisonment.  South Africa does not operate a jury system, so his fate will be decided by judge Thokozile Masipa who will consult with assessors.

The trial continues.

Oscar Pistorius
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