Murderer's request for assisted suicide denied in Belgium

AP News
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Posted: Jan 06, 2015 7:55 AM

BRUSSELS (AP) — The Belgian government says a rapist and murderer will not be granted his wish for assisted suicide this weekend but will instead be taken to a special facility for observation.

Justice Minister Koen Geens said Tuesday that Frank Van Den Bleeken, who was found guilty of murder and rape in several cases and has been locked up for almost 30 years, would be given a chance for a "qualitatively decent life."

Van Den Bleeken said he wants to die because he has no viable treatment options left for his psychological problems and cannot control his sexual urges.

Belgium has one of the broadest euthanasia laws in the world but the fate of Van Den Bleeken was seen by many as proof of a failing justice and health system.