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Netherlands: prosecutor investigates 33 deaths related to 'suicide powder'

2021-10-27T15:21:04.967Z

In the Netherlands, a group called the Last Will Cooperative is under investigation. The public prosecutor sees her as a criminal organization that supports illegal euthanasia.



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Patrol car in the Netherlands (archive image)

Photo: Sascha Steinach / imago images

The Dutch authorities are investigating 33 suspicious deaths of people who allegedly bought "suicide powder" from a member of a group working for the right to die.

The public prosecutor announced on Wednesday.

The group is the Coöperatie Laatste Wil (Cooperative Last Will).

According to the public prosecutor's office, this has been promoting "Substance X" as a cheap and painless way of dying since 2018.

The group is a criminal organization that supports illegal euthanasia.

In 2002, the Netherlands became the first country in the world to legalize euthanasia.

However, it is only allowed if the patient applies for it with full consciousness and suffers from an incurable disease and unbearable pain.

Each case has to be examined and approved individually by a commission.

Assisted suicide or the provision of funds to commit suicide outside the strict euthanasia criteria are punishable by imprisonment of up to three years.

"Substance X" sold to "more than a hundred people"

The public prosecutor's office accuses a 28-year-old from the cooperative of illegal drug distribution and money laundering.

The investigators expect charges of aiding and abetting suicide, as spokesman Bart Vaessen said.

“We're investigating 33 cases in which 'Substance X' was sold to people who died later.

15 of these cases were found to have died from using 'Substance X', ”said Vaessen.

The suspect was reportedly released pending trial.

Two other members of the group were arrested last week, it said.

One of them, the 78-year-old psychologist Wim van Dijk, later told the Dutch newspaper “De Volkskrant” that he had sold “Substance X” to “more than a hundred people”.

The chairman of the organization, Jos van Wijk, is also under investigation.

He said on the Dutch talk show "Op1" that the group "always acted within the legal framework."

wit / Reuters

Source: spiegel

All life articles on 2021-10-27

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