Only senior managers in the Department of Correctional Services knew about a plan to release Oscar Pistorius on correctional supervision one day early, an official said.
The Paralympian, who was convicted of culpable homicide for killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, was released between 19:30 and 20:30 on Monday evening, a day before the official date.
All the paperwork for the release was concluded before he was released from Kgosi Mampuru II prison in Pretoria, a source in the department said.
“This is not the only case where this has happened. It has happened before,” correctional services spokesperson Manelisi Wolela said earlier on Tuesday.
He said the implementation of the parole board’s decision to release him was up to the prison’s management.
The parole board had decided that Pistorius would be released into correctional supervision on Tuesday.
Instead he was snuck out of Kgosi Mampuru II prison in Pretoria on Monday night. His lawyer Brian Webber told the Citizen he was home shortly after 22:00.
He was expected to serve out the rest of his sentence at the Waterkloof, Pretoria, home of his uncle, Arnold Pistorius.
Next month the State will ask the Supreme Court of Appeal to set aside Pistorius’s culpable homicide conviction, and replace it with the more serious charge of murder.
On October 21 last year, Pistorius was sentenced to five years in jail for shooting Steenkamp dead on Valentine’s Day in 2013. He was eligible to be released into correctional supervision after serving out one-sixth, or 10 months, of his sentence.