Friday, February 12, 2016

Toronto Radio: Ghomeshi Trial Ends, Defense Cites 'Lies"

Jian Ghomeshi and his attorney Marie Henein
The defense and Crown have wrapped up their cases in the Jian Ghomeshi sexual assault trial in Toronto, with the judge's decision expected to come on March 24

The inconsistencies and lies of the three complainants in the sexual assault trial of Jian Ghomeshi must lead to an acquittal of the former CBC Radio host, his defense team argued in court Thursday. But the Crown (prosecution) suggested that the "unshaken" allegations of the women show guilt.

​"You've heard the evidence in this case," Ghomeshi's lawyer Marie Henein said in her closing argument. "And for reasons that we have submitted to you, it is our submission that the evidence in the courtroom falls so far short of proving anything beyond a reasonable doubt, it is so riddled with inconsistencies and improbabilities and proven lies under oath that it cannot be said to prove anything.

"It's our respectful submission that Mr. Ghomeshi is not guilty and that he's entitled to an acquittal on all counts."

Ghomeshi, 48, who lives in Toronto, has pleaded not guilty to four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcoming resistance by choking, all related to alleged assaults from 2002 to 2003. The identities of two of the complainants in the case are protected under a publication ban, but actress Lucy DeCoutere, also an air force captain, went to court to lift the ban on her name.

Canadian Press sketch
The CBC reports...In determining  the credibility and reliability of the witnesses, Henein argued that all three women had withheld information from the police, Crown and the court about their ongoing communications with Ghomeshi. She said it was "deeply troubling" that these details were disclosed at "the 11th hour" before trial and only when there was concern the women would be contradicted by objective evidence.

The first witness had told police and the court she had no subsequent contact with Ghomeshi after two alleged attacks but later acknowledged she sent him two emails and a picture of her in a bikini more than a year later. The woman said she sent the emails to bait him into calling her to explain his actions.

DeCoutere had told the court that she had no romantic interest in Ghomeshi after her alleged assault, and would only see him at industry functions.

But it was later revealed in court that hours after the alleged sexual assault, she had sent him an email saying she wanted to have sex with him, and sent him a handwritten letter days later saying she was sad they didn't spend the night together.

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