On 11 July 1963, police raided Lilisleaf farm at Rivonia near Johannesburg, arresting alleged members of the high command of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC). Together with the already imprisoned Nelson Mandela, they were put on trial and charged with conspiring to overthrow the apartheid government by violent revolution. Their expected punishment was death. In The State vs. Nelson Mandela their defence attorney, Joel Joffe, gives a blow-by-blow account of the most important trial in South Africa's history, vividly portraying the characters of those involved, and exposing the astonishing bigotry and rampant discrimination faced by the accused, as well as showing their courage under fire. Lord Joel Joffe CBE is a crossbench peer in the House of Lords. He has previously served as Chairperson of Oxfam and worked as a human-rights lawyer.