Counsel for Michael Adebolajo, one of the two men standing trial for the murder of Lee Rigby, has described his client as “the most law-abiding terrorist in the history of this country” at the ongoing trial.
According to the counsel, David Gottlieb, he employed the use of such oxymoron to describe his client because Adebolajo paid for a parking ticket moments before he allegedly murdered Lee Rigby.
Mr Gottlieb admitted in his closing speech that: “All deaths outside of lawful deaths are cruel, needless and unnecessary.
“Do you think really that this is the cruelest, most sadistic, most callous, most cowardly killing that’s ever occurred in our nation’s history? It isn’t.”
Mr Gottlieb said Mr Adebolajo’s family were “victims” in the case as much as the family of Lee Rigby and told the jury that his client had been “demonised and painted as a monster”.
Mr Gottlieb later explained that he was using a “Sherlock Holmes” approach, adding: “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”
He said there were unarmed police near the scene, but Mr Adebolajo chose to wait for armed teams, which would not fit with an intention to kill an officer.
The barrister then informed the jurors that the issue of what motivated Mr Adebolajo “raises awkward questions” for the UK’s political leaders.
He said: “A person, a human being, can do the most evil act in the world and not actually be evil themselves.”
The two accused persons no longer face a charge of conspiracy to murder a police officer after the judge discharged the jury from any further consideration of that count.
They, however, still face counts of murder and attempted murder of a police officer, which they both deny.