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  1. #1
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    Australian jailed for euthanasia

    Australian jailed for euthanasia


    Justins administered Nembutal to Wylie

    A 60-year old Australian woman, Shirley Justins, has been sentenced to spend her weekends in jail for nearly two years for killing her partner.

    Ms Justins had believed she was doing what Graeme Wylie wanted but knew he lacked the capacity to decide whether to take his own life, the judge said.

    He accused her of being "selfish and cruel" for denying Mr Wylie's daughters the chance to say goodbye in 2006.

    Mr Wylie had been rejected for a legally assisted suicide.

    That rejection in Switzerland was due to concerns he lacked the cognitive ability to make such a decision, leading Ms Justins to give the 71-year-old Alzheimer's sufferer the drug Nembutal.

    Mr Wylie's daughter, Tania Shakespeare, welcomed the sentence handed out to Ms Justins.
    "She did deceive our family. She did deceive Dad," she said.
    "I'm heartbroken that I wasn't able to say goodbye to my father," she added.

    A family friend, 75-year old Caren Jenning, was convicted as an accessory to manslaughter in June this year, for her role in travelling to Mexico to get the drug for herself and Mr Wylie, a former pilot for the national carrier Qantas.

    Ms Jenning, who was suffering from terminal breast cancer committed suicide in September, saying she did not want to die in jail.

    Nembutal is a powerful barbiturate favoured by euthanasia advocates.

    Test case?

    Supreme Court Justice Roderick Howe told the Sydney court he did not see the trial as a test case for euthanasia.
    "It was no such thing. The law holds human life so sacred that it does not give permission for someone else to take it," he said.

    He described the actions of Ms Justins and Ms Jenning as "a joint criminal enterprise", saying that "a calculated and unlawful taking of human life is an affront to every aspect of civilised society".

    Dr Philip Nitschke, head of the euthanasia group Exit International, told reporters that the fate of the two women showed that people who wanted to take their own lives should make preparations in time.

    "He asked (the women) to help him when he ran out options. Those two women loved him that much that they took that choice and they're now paying one hell of a price for it," Mr Nitschke said.

    Ms Justins had faced a maximum 25-year prison sentence for her role in helping her partner of 18 years to die.


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    Both of my children had a youth in asia. Should I be worried?

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