Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has advised a 290-strong group of UK politicians on lobbying Florida governor Jeb Bush to review the death row conviction of Londoner Krishna Maharaj.
The advice was given on a pro bono basis. Freshfields advised MP Peter Bottomley, former attorney general Nicholas Lyell, Ken Livingstone and others on drafting a letter which was sent to the US president's brother on 29 November. The letter stated: "About 300 British politicians have believed there may be serious flaws in the case against Mr Maharaj." Maharaj was convicted of double murder 14 years ago, and lawyers all over the world have been convinced that his conviction does not make sense. The victims, businessman Derrick Moo Young and his son, died in a Miami hotel room. Seven alibi witnesses who were able to testify that Maharaj was 25 miles away at the time of the killing were not called. The judge in the case was arrested three days into his trial on bribery charges involving another case. And a witness for the prosecution failed a lie-detector test, which Maharaj passed. Freshfields has also confronted the UK Government to raise the issue of taking the US government to the International Court of Human Rights over the Maharaj case. Freshfields partner Paul Lomas is leading the team.