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No jail for aiding son's suicide.

Montreal, QC -- A smiling Marielle Houle announced her relief January 28, 2006, after being spared a jail term for helping her son commit suicide. In September 2004, Houle's 36-year-old son, who suffered from multiple sclerosis, swallowed a cocktail of drugs and then his mother held a plastic bag over his head to asphyxiate him.

Houle has been "sentenced" to three years' probation. The maximum penalty for assisted suicide is 14 years in prison.

In his ambivalent ruling, Judge Laramee left both sides of the "right"--to-die debate in confusion. Calling Houle's actions "very reprehensive and unlawful," he went on to say, "Considering the sacred nature of life, it is neither arbitrary nor unreasonable to ban suicide assistance, considering the possible abuses and the lack of proper safeguards to protect vulnerable people."

According to the judge, Ms. Houle's "memory of her beloved son taking his last breath in a bag that she held on his head," is "without doubt the worst of sentences she could face" (Globe and Mail, Jan. 28, 2006).
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Title Annotation:Canada; assisted suicide of son with multiple sclerosis
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1CQUE
Date:Mar 1, 2006
Words:171
Previous Article:Depopulation.
Next Article:Plan B (MAP) evades all restrictions.
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