Oscar Pistorius' charity work in the spotlight and attacked in court during sentencing hearing
Oscar Pistorius' charity work in the spotlight and attacked in court during sentencing hearingGetty

Oscar Pistorius has been portrayed as a single-minded careerist who focused on accumulating wealth via athletics, at his sentencing hearing appearance today (14 October).

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel sought to demolish the image portrayed of Pistorius as a humane philanthropist who distributed sports gear to disabled children.

He suggested strongly that sponsorship deals with large companies such as Nike and Oakley were treated by Pistorius as opportunities for personal advancement.

Well-known brands acted as personal marketing agencies for star athletes by providing opportunities for performers such as Pistorius to burnish their public image, said Nel.

Pistorius, 27, occasionally glared at Nel's back during the lawyer's prolonged take-down of his charitable work and private motives. The paralympian also wrote copious notes for his legal team.

Pistorius' manager Peet Van Zyl admitted the nature of the bargain struck with companies, but insisted Pistorius "went the extra mile" to help disabled youngsters.

Giving evidence at a sentencing hearing, Pistorius' manager Peet Van Zyl insisted the convicted killer would have "opportunities" after serving his sentence for culpable homicide.

Nel replied incredulously: "Really? After he's killed somebody?"

Van Zyl said: "It all depends on the trial. I can definitely see opportunity for Mr Pistorius with regards to his foundation. I think also that is the legacy that Mr Pistorius would one day leave behind once his running days are over in terms of giving people the gift of mobility – I know that is very dear to his heart."