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FILE PHOTO: Oscar Pistorius leaves the North Gauteng High Court. /CFP

South Africa’s Oscar Pistorius released on parole 11 years after murdering girlfriend

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Former South African Paralympian Oscar Pistorius was released from jail on parole on Friday and “is now at home”, authorities said, almost 11 years after he shot dead his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in a crime that gripped the world.

Having served more than half his sentence, the 37-year-old double-amputee was quietly whisked away from the Atteridgeville prison on the outskirts of the capital Pretoria, avoiding the hordes of media gathered outside.

“He was admitted into the system of Community Corrections and is now at home,” the department of correctional services said in a statement.

Pistorius has been restricted to staying within the Pretoria district of Waterkloof, where his uncle lives, although precise information on his whereabouts has not been confirmed.

Known worldwide as “Blade Runner” for his carbon-fibre prosthetics, Pistorius will not be allowed to speak to the media as a condition of his parole.

Prison authorities had previously warned the press that there would be no opportunity to photograph or speak to him and provided little detail about the plans for his release, citing “security” concerns.

Pistorius killed Steenkamp, a model and law graduate who was 29 years old at the time, in the early hours of Valentine’s Day 2013, firing four times through the bathroom door of his ultra-secure Pretoria house.

The shooting came a year after Pistorius made history by being the first double-amputee to race at Olympic level when he appeared at the London 2012 games.

He was found guilty of murder and given a 13-year jail sentence in 2017 after a lengthy trial and several appeals.

He had pleaded not guilty and denied killing Steenkamp in a rage, saying he mistook her for a burglar.

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