There have been myriad news reports of late that the badly beaten Afshan Azad (Muslim star of the Harry Potter movie) wanted to retract the honor killing charges against her father and her brother (who attempted to kill her for dating a non-Muslim young man). The thing is, the "retraction" did not come from her or her lawyer. The source is her would-be paternal and fraternal killers. They are would-be murderers for Islam, so what's a lie -- it's righteous, right?
Attorney John Wolfson, who is defending the pair, insists that Afshan has tried to retract her statement, regretting the outcome of the investigation. He states that she never wanted for her father and brother to be arrested.
Their spin is that "she tried on three occasions to retract her statement and has pleaded with the Crown Prosecution Service not to arrest" them. Is that so? So why was the restraining order against them issued after the arrest? And why are they prohibited from traveling to London, where she is staying? It is still unsafe for her there. She is not only a target for her family, but she is seen as an enemy of the Muslim community. After the father and brother were arrested, they expressed fear of reprisals from the Muslim community for failing to uphold their "family honor." Here is that admission.
Speaking at the family’s semi-detached home, her brother Ashraf, a customer services adviser, said: ‘We are going to get trouble from the community now. It is bad news for our safety, her safety.
‘My younger brother is going to get harassed at college. All our family is going to be harassed by the community because of this.
What's most galling is how the media and various columnists took it on its face without so much as a cursory inquiry. This young woman needs protection, real protection. Instead, the media is working to protect her attempted killers in the name of Islam.
Much thanks to Da Vinci, who tracked down the real story.
Harry Potter Lies About “Honor Killing”Tragically, a lie is circulating the Net like wildfire that the Harry Potter actress, Afshan Azad, has tried 'three times' to retract her statement to the police wherein she accused her father and brother of trying to murder her (for seeing a Hindu man). In reality, however, Ms. Azad has said no such thing. It is instead John Wolfson, the attorney for the father and brother, who's giving this lie to the press. Here is the revealing text.
"But lawyer John Wolfson, who is defending the father and son, insists the actress is already regretting her statement, and has tried to retract it through the Crown Prosecution Service three times.
He tells the Daily Express, "This is a desperately sad situation and she has never wanted her father and brother to be locked up. She has tried on three occasions to retract her statement and has pleaded with the Crown Prosecution Service not to proceed.
"I sincerely hope for the family's sake that this can be quickly and happily resolved. My client and his father have already denied the charges and will maintain that plea."
This trick by Wolfson is the oldest (and dirtiest) trick in the legal world - a lawyer trying to save his clients by destroying the veracity of the accuser. We saw its infamous practice in the O.J. Simpson trial when Simpson's lawyers destroyed the truthful testimony of LAPD detective Mark Fuhrman (testimony which could have put Simpson in jail for life) by accusing Fuhrman of being a racist. Mr. Wolfson is simply trying a different version of the same ugly tactic.
Suspicions about his statement, however, should have been raised by the fact that there is NO video, photo, tape, recording, etc., of Ms. Azad saying this herself - it's only Wolfson claiming she said this. (Rule of thumb: if you didn't hear someone say it, it means they didn't.) Note also that the Crown Prosecution Service is not corroborating this lie. Had Ms. Azad actually approached them '3 times' to retract her statement, there would be a report to this effect. The fact that the police do not admit to any such report makes it clear that no report exists - i.e., Ms. Azad never approached them '3 times' (or even once) to retract her statement. Finally, this lie by the lawyer is proven as such by the fact that Ms. Azad is still hiding out in London in fear of her life. That clearly proves that, far from regretting her charges against her father and brother, she clearly understands that her family will kill her again if they have the chance (and she's not giving it to them).
It's not surprising that so many have been duped into believing the lawyer's lie. I would have believed it myself - had it not been for the fact that I've been a legal secretary for a quarter century. Trust me, there's a reason for the joke: "How do you know a lawyer's lying? His lips are moving." Again, as I've said, this ploy by the attorney for the accused is the oldest (and dirtiest) trick in the legal world.
Nice try, Mr. Wolfson - but it isn't going to work.