APwi 06/30 1733 Guyana Attorney LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) -- The knighted attorney who was
APwi 06/30 1733 Guyana Attorney
LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) -- The knighted attorney who was the
lawyer for cult leader Jim Jones in Guayana says 1,200 persons --
not 900 as reported in the media -- died at Jones' compound in
And he says 85 percent died from gunshot wounds in the back,
not from drinking Kool-Aid laced with cyanide.
Sir Lionel Luckhoo said his information came from the doctor
who performed autopsies on the victims.
In a speech here Monday night, the 73-year old lawyer from
Georgetown, Guyana, said a Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship
International banquet which he tried to avoid, on Nov. 7, 1978,
saved him from the "White Night" death 11 days later at
He didn't go to Jonestown on Nov. 18, as Jones requested,
because "the Spirit told me: don't go."
"I should have been dead," he told La Crosse's Full Gospel
chapter. "I was Jim Jones' lawyer."
He was mayor of Georgetown four times and a "double
ambassador' ' to England for both Guyana and neighboring
Barbados. He is listed in the Guinness Book of Records with a
streak of 245 successful murder trial defenses, in Guyana and
Despite a stroke in 1984, Luckhoo devotes his life to
traveling and speaking to groups of Christians throughout the
He was honored at a banquet June 4 in New York City by
ambassadors to the United Nations, he said.
Luckhoo had been hired by Jones, leader of the ill-fated
People's Temple, to represent Jones in a custody battle for his
illegitimate son, John Victor Stoen.
"I didn't know him (Jones) well," Luckhoo said after the talk.
"He was a client."
However, Luckhoo called Jones an "atheist" and a "communist"
who "took over to my country 1,200 Americans."
He said that after the Nov. 7 banquet he rejected a request by
Jones to be at the cult's commune at Jonestown when U.S. Rep.
Leo Ryan of California visited toinvestigate the People's Temple.
On Nov. 18, Ryan, three newsmen and a Temple defector were gunned
down by Jones' followers at an airstrip near Jonestown.
Jones then ordered a "mass suicide" the cult allegedly had
been practicing for months.
He said Americans need to warn their children, grandchildren,
nephews and nieces about cults.
"America is too gullible," he said. "America would accept and
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