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Mugabe willing to testify

The lawyer of a Chicago man charged with illegally lobbying for the lifting of sanctions against the Zimbabwean government said today that President Robert Mugabe is willing to testify on video when he visits New York next week for the United Nations general assembly. C. Gregory Turner was charged with Prince Asiel Ben Israel who pleaded guilty and was sentenced to seven months. Turner’s trial is due to start on 29 September. The two were expected to be paid $3.4 million for their efforts. According to the Chicago Tribune, Turner’s lawyers say Mugabe’s testimony is “absolutely central” to the allegations against their client and since Mugabe is a foreigner and cannot be subpoenaed to testify, they would like to record his testimony when he comes to New York next for the UN summit which is on 23 and 24 September. “One of the primary bases for the government’s prosecution of Mr. Turner in this case is its allegation that Mr. Turner specifically acted for and at the direction of Mr. Mugabe….…If the government is truly interested in the pursuit of justice, it should welcome Mr. Mugabe’s videotaped testimony,” Turner’s lawyers said.

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