General News of Saturday, 5 August 2017
The lawyer defending four of the suspected lynchers of Major Maxwell Adam Mahama says he has received several threats for taking up the case. Lawyer George Bernard Shaw says the threats range from verbal abuses to death wishes on him.
He said he had his first brush with the verbal abuses at the Cape Coast High Court, where he was verbally attacked for representing the suspected killers in court.
Speaking on TV3’s Hot Issues on Saturday, the British-trained lawyer said his windscreen was at one-time smashed with stones by some unknown persons while leaving the court.
The lawyer is representing four suspects including the Denkyira-Obuasi Assemblyman, William Baah, who is accused of organizing the youth to lynch the erstwhile army captain. He insists they are innocent until proven otherwise, beyond all reasonable doubt.
“I do not stand for evil, I stand for justice.” He told host Winston Amoah that the threats against him went to the extent of some men of God praying for him to die.
He noted that the men of God are reported to have found it difficult to see the ‘killers’ get a lawyer to advocate for them. He has, however, not reported any of the threats to the police.
‘Advise to get off case’
He further revealed that some of his peers as well as family members have advised him not to defend the suspects given the level of public anger.
“Even up till now, a lot of my peers are advising me to get off the case.” He later added: “Even my family wants me to stop.”
The late Major Mahama was given a state burial on June 8 at the Osu Military Cemetery Lawyer George Bernard Shaw says he voluntarily took up, pro bono, but will insist that they are judged within the limits of Ghana’s laws.
He was not happy with the treatment of the suspects, saying even the police prevented him from speaking with them in the preliminary stages of the case.
He was, however, quick to add that he will let his clients plead guilty if he realizes they are. For now, he says, and given the narrative of facts, they are innocent.
The late Major Mahama, who was given a posthumous promotion, was lynched after being mistaken for an armed robber, at least initial reports said. Others have said it was a case of targeted killing as the soldier was commanding a military detachment against illegal small-scale mining at Diaso, the district capital of Upper Denkyira West.