“Ready, Aim, Fire”, the fourth victim in the Breaker Morant trial
James Unkles, Lawyer, former Crown & Police Prosecutor, joins Luke Grant to talk about his book “Ready, Aim, Fire”, the fourth victim in the Breaker Morant trial which is dedicated to the memory of the late Major James Francis Thomas – known as the fourth victim in the execution of Lieutenant Harry ‘Breaker’ Morant.
Thomas was the defence lawyer in the 1902 Courts Martial of Lieutenants Harry Morant, Peter Handcock, and George Witton who were tried and sentenced for executing 12 Boer prisoners, one of the first war crime prosecutions in British military history. Morant and Handcock were executed on 27 February 1902 and Witton’s death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment.
117 years since the Courts Martial, military lawyer and the book’s author, James Unkles, is still fighting on behalf of the men’s descendants for the Commonwealth Government to hold a judicial inquiry into the trial and sentencing of the three men and seeking their posthumous pardons.
Like many, Unkles believes the men were scapegoats for the war crimes of their British superiors – who were not prosecuted for similar offences and giving illegal orders to shoot prisoners.
Download the full podcast here.