The elder brother of South African athlete Oscar Pistorius has been charged over a deadly road crash five years ago, the family confirmed yesterday.
“Carl Pistorius, brother of Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius, faces charges of culpable homicide after a 2008 road accident in which a woman motorcyclist sadly lost her life,” the family said in a statement.
His trial had been due to start on Thursday, a day before his Olympic and Paralympic hero brother was granted bail on a charge of premeditated murder over the Valentine’s Day killing of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp.
However, his case has been adjourned to the end of next month, meaning he will likely go on trial before his younger brother.
The 28-year-old Carl “deeply regrets” the incident, the family said. “It was a tragic road accident after the deceased collided with Carl’s car.”
He had no alcohol in his blood at the time of the accident, according to tests, the family said.
Prosecutors reinstated the charges after they were initially dropped.
Attorney Kenny Oldwage, who also represents Oscar Pistorius, had “no doubt” Carl was innocent, the statement said.
The eNews Africa television channel reported the accident happened in Vereeneging 60km south of Johannesburg.
Oscar Pistorius, the 26-year-old double amputee athlete known as “Blade Runner,” was released on 1 million rand (US$112,770) bail on Friday. He is due back in court on June 4.
Meanwhile, City Press said a substance found in Oscar Pistorius’ luxury Pretoria home during a police search was an over-the-counter herbal sexual stimulant.
The prosecution had said during his bail hearing that police found two boxes of “testosterone” and needles, but the defense countered that it was a legal herbal remedy known as testocompasutium coenzyme.
City Press said the remedy was a combination of vitamins and herbal cures partly derived from animal organs.
Sports physician Jon Patricios told the paper the product is used to boost sexual energy, but that athletes are not advised to use it since it may increase their testosterone levels.
“This is not an anabolic steroid and it is unlikely it will lead to irrational anger,” he said.
South Africa’s Sunday Times newspaper said a new investigation team would investigate Oscar Pistorius’ apparent links with a network that used recreational drugs.