• Short Summary

    ONE OF THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL MURDER TRIALS OF ALL TIME OPENED IN LIEGE, BELGIUM, TODAY (MONDAY) WHEN A YOUNG MOTHER WENT ON TRIAL ACCUSED OF KILLING HER CRIPPLED "THALIDOMIDE BABY".

  • Description

    ONE OF THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL MURDER TRIALS OF ALL TIME OPENED IN LIEGE, BELGIUM, TODAY (MONDAY) WHEN A YOUNG MOTHER WENT ON TRIAL ACCUSED OF KILLING HER CRIPPLED "THALIDOMIDE BABY".

    THE MOTHER -- 25-YEAR-OLD MADAME SUZANNE COIPEL-VANDEPUTTE -- HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH POISONING HER SEVEN-DAY-OLD CRIPPLED DAUGHTER AFTER A FAMILY COUNCIL. THE BABY BORN WITHOUT ARMS AND WITH DEFORMED FEET AFTER THE MOTHER HAD TAKEN THE DRUG, THALIDOMIDE, DURING PREGNANCY.

    THE TRIAL IS THE FIRST IN BELGIAN LEGAL HISTORY TO BE TELEVISED AND OF THE BIGGEST EVER HELD IN THE COUNTRY.

    CROWDS OF PEOPLE, MANY OF THEM WOMEN, GATHERED OUTSIDE THE COURT ROOM IN THE PALAIS DE JUSTICE, LONG BEFORE THE TRIAL OPENED. THE COURT ROOM ITSELF HAD BEEN SPECIALLY ENLARGED TO ACCOMMODATE MORE THAN ONE HUNDRED BELGIAN AND FOREIGN JOURNALISTS AND SEVERAL HUNDRED MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC.

    FOUR PEOPLE ARE ACCUSED OF AIDING AND ABETTING THE MOTHER. THEY ARE THE FAMILY DOCTOR, DR. JACQUES CASTERS -- WHO ORIGINALLY PRESCRIBED THE THALIDOMIDE FOR THE MOTHER -- HER HUSBAND, A SISTER, AND HER MOTHER. MADAME COIPEL-VANDEPUTTE WAS THE LAST OF THE FIVE TO ENTER THE DOCK.

    THE CASE IS BEING HEARD BY AN ALL-MALE JURY OF 12. THE DEATH SENTENCED CAN BE IMPOSED ON THE MOTHER OF THE BABY BUT IN BELGIUM, THE DEATH SENTENCED IS ALWAYS COMMUTED TO LIFE, EXCEPT FOR TREASON. THE PRISON TERM CAN BE REDUCED TO A MINIMUM OF THREE YEARS IN EXTENUATING CIRCUMSTANCES.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA6B737YALYE7FURR2SDOGB9BIB
    Media URN:
    VLVA6B737YALYE7FURR2SDOGB9BIB
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    05/11/1962
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:01:38:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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