Justice ministry considering assisted suicide appeal

2015-05-01 12:38
Dignity SA member Patsy Schonegevel stands outside the North Gauteng High Court holding a picture of her son Craig. (Thomas Hartleb, News24)

Dignity SA member Patsy Schonegevel stands outside the North Gauteng High Court holding a picture of her son Craig. (Thomas Hartleb, News24)

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Johannesburg – The justice ministry on Friday said it is considering whether it still wants to appeal the High Court in Pretoria’s ruling on the assisted suicide of Robin Stransham-Ford, after he died on Thursday.

“In view of the latest developments we will reflect on the matter and also await written reasons for judgment and make a determination on the issue of appeal,” spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga said in a statement.

He said they had yet to verify reports that he died before the ruling was made. It was not clear if Stransham-Ford died before or after the ruling.

Judge Hans Fabricius ruled on Thursday that Stransham-Ford, 65, who was suffering from prostate cancer and was given weeks to live, could commit suicide with the help of a doctor. He ordered that the doctor who would help him should not be prosecuted or face disciplinary proceedings.

Immediately after the ruling, Mhaga told reporters they would appeal as soon as Fabricius handed down his reasons on Monday.

Mhaga said the ruling had far-reaching implications for the National Prosecuting Authority’s ability to decide what cases it could prosecute.

Read more on:    robin stransham-ford  |  pretoria  |  assisted suicide

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