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Fri, 01 Aug 2014 13:53:58 +0000
(PRETORIA, South Africa) -- Oscar Pistorius has sold the house in which he killed his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.
The four-bedroom luxury home in the Silver Woods Estate sold for 4.5 million rand ($420,000), far less than he was initially asking. Pistorius tried to sell the house in 2011 but withdrew it from the market when there were no buyers. At the time, the asking price for the house was 6.5 million rand. Pistorius testified at his bail hearing that the house was worth five million rand.
Earlier this year, Pistorius’ lawyers announced that he wanted to sell the house to cover legal fees for his murder trial.
New owner Louwtjie Lourens, a mining consultant, told The Times newspaper in South Africa that he plans to live in the house with his family when he retires, but it is believed the property will be rented out until the Lourens moves in.
"It is in a safe area and everyone I dealt with was very professional," he told the paper.
The house was the scene of Steenkamp's Valentine's Day death last year that has resulted in Pistorius' riveting murder trial.
Final arguments in the trial will be heard next week. Judge Thokozile Masipa will then indicate when she will hand down a verdict.
Pistorius, the legless athlete known as the Blade Runner for his prosthetic legs, claims he thought he was acting in self defense when he fired four shots through the closed bathroom door, because he believed the noise he heard in the bathroom was an intruder.
Prosecutors have argued that Pistorius intentionally fired at Steenkamp, who was hiding behind the door.
The prosecutor's office said this week that it has filed its final arguments with the court. "We are ready to argue," said spokesperson Nathi Mcube.
Pistorius' lawyers have until Monday to file their written final arguments.
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