Saturday, 23 July 2016

Verdict - Final chapter of 'Witness: A modern parable'

The Evening Star – 15 April
People’s Prophet found guilty in uncontested trial

In a trial lasting just one day, the self-proclaimed “People’s Prophet” has been found guilty of sedition, disturbance of the peace and unspecified charges believed to be linked to a suspected terrorist plot.

The trial was held in camera, closed to the press and public, due to the sensitive nature of the case. The 37-year-old defendant refused to enter a plea, and did not contest the charges. At the request of the court, he will undergo further psychiatric tests before his sentence is pronounced.

There was a heavy police presence outside the court building in anticipation of possible protests. However, in sharp contrast to their vocal presence at public meetings and rallies in the days leading up to his arrest, none of the accused’s followers joined the press outside the court to hear the verdict.

Chief Prosecutor, Theodore Fitzgerald, told reporters that the open-and-shut nature of the case confirmed the accused had no defence.

“Let this be a lesson to those who aspire to undermine the stability of our society,” he added. “So-called charismatic leaders are nothing without their followers, and as you can see, the People’s Prophet’s followers quickly evaporated.

“The status quo prevails.”

(This is the sixth and final part of "Witness: A modern parable". Click to read Parts One, Two, Three, Four and Five.) 

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