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Right to Life Commends Police for Protecting Elderly

Right to Life Commends Police for Protecting Elderly Exit Members
Media Release 23rd October 2016
The Police deserve the commendation and support of the community for their efforts to protect vulnerable and elderly New Zealanders who are members of Exit International . Philip Nitschke a disgraced medical practitioner the founder of Exit has been responsible for encouraging and assisting in the suicide of many vulnerable persons both young and old. He has also encouraged members to break the law by purchasing Nembutal a Class C drug from Mexico and by joining his organized groups that travel with him to Mexico to purchase the deadly drug.

Importing a Class C drug is a serious crime and violation of the Misuse of Drug Act 1975. On conviction the offender may be fined up to $500 and imprisoned for up to three years in prison. To incite, counsel or assist in suicide is a violation of the Crimes Act section 179. On conviction the offender may be imprisoned for up to 14 years.

The Police have a duty to help vulnerable people who are likely to harm themselves to be placed in a place of appropriate care. New Zealand has one of the highest rates of suicide in the OECD. The Chief Coroner recently advised that 579 New Zealanders in the 2015/2016 year, killed themselves. the highest ever recorded in New Zealand. This is a tragedy and the Police are to be commended for trying to bring this horrific total down. The Police also have a duty to prosecute those regardless of age, who break the law by illegally importing or smuggling dangerous Class C drugs.

It is disappointing that David Seymour MP, a member of Parliament, the leader of ACT, a member of government and the sponsor of a Death with Dignity bill, opposes the activities of the Police and irrationally claims that the visits to homes of members of Exit by members of the Police in Operation Painter is politically motivated. This is a very serious accusation to make and infers that the Police are acting on instructions from government.

The Medical Board of Australia in 2014 suspended Philip Nitschke from practicing medicine and declared that he “represents a serious risk to public health and safety.” He later successfully appealed the suspension. Right to Life asks, why then is he allowed to conduct meetings in New Zealand to encourage vulnerable people to illegally import Nembutal, a Class C drug and to encourage them to commit suicide?

The Minister of Justice Mark Burton in the Helen Clark Labour government was asked by Right to Life in February 2006 to take action to prevent Dr Nitschke promoting suicide in New Zealand. Burton refused, stating that; “the right to freedom of expression is an established principle set out in the New Zealand Bill of Rights 1990” and “Discussing or publishing information on the topic of euthanasia in New Zealand is not illegal.”

Right to Life asks ”When is the government going to take action to prevent Philip Nitschke from destroying the lives of vulnerable people?”
Ken Orr
Spokesperson,
Right to Life.

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