Henry Mathis' lawyer speaks out - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Henry Mathis' lawyer speaks out

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Albany - The attorney for indicted Albany commissioner Henry Mathis says the case is based on politics and lies. Rick Collum says he's ready to go to trial to defend Mathis.

Mathis is accused of extorting money from Joe McDonald. McDonald was an associate of an Albany night club to which Mathis and other commissioners voted to give an alcohol license. Collum says McDonald is lying.

"This whole case comes down to a question of integrity - Joe McDonald's integrity or Henry Mathis' integrity. I think at the end of day, they will believe Mathis or McDonald," said Collum. "The government's entire case is based on the allegations of Joe McDonald. He hasn't had to answer any questions under oath up until now. At trial, he'll have to. I have several questions, very hard questions, that he's going to have to tell the truth about or be prosecuted for perjury. If he tells the truth, Mr. Mathis will be cleared of all charges."

Prosecutors have video and audio tapes they say show Mathis taking money from McDonald. Collum says the tapes are poor quality and can easily be disproved.

Mathis' trial is set for the first week of April.

posted by kathryn.murchison@walb.com