Disgraced Olympic icon Oscar Pistorius has had his prison sentence doubled for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

The Blade Runner, as the 31-year-old South African is known, was jailed for six years in 2016 for killing Steenkamp on Valentine's Day in 2013.

At the time, the length of his sentence was described as "lenient" by many commentators in the country.

The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in South Africa heard the state's appeal against the Paralympian on November 3 and on Friday (NZT) handed down the new sentence of 13 years and five months, news24.com reports.

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The self-proclaimed gun enthusiast had fired four shots through a bathroom door, claiming that he believed there was an intruder in the bathroom.

High Court Judge Thokozile Masipa initially sentenced Pistorius to five years for manslaughter in 2014. He served only 10 months of the five-year sentence in prison before being released and put under house arrest.

The State appealed the manslaughter conviction, and it was later replaced with murder and a sentence of six years behind bars.

Reeva Steenkamp was shot and killed by Oscar Pistorious in his home. Photo / AP
Reeva Steenkamp was shot and killed by Oscar Pistorious in his home. Photo / AP

The minimum sentence for murder in South Africa is 15 years.

According to news.com.au, the prosecution argued that Pistorius' disability should not have been a mitigating factor and that the athlete, who wept regularly throughout the trial, had not shown genuine remorse, but rather felt sorry for himself and regretted his actions.

Pistorius, whose lower legs were amputated because of a congenital defect, soared to international fame after becoming the first amputee to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games.

There was no immediate comment from the Pistorius or Steenkamp families.

Rights groups in a country beset by high levels of violent crime against women say Pistorius received preferential treatment compared to non-whites and those without his wealth or international celebrity status