Thursday, April 26, 2007

Forced abortion case in Belgium involves electric shock

When I read about this case, I just knew I had to translate it. Here's my translation. I couldn't finish the last two sentences because they involve legal terminology I am not familiar with:

A resident of Assenede, Belgium and his parents, charged with attempted forced abortion, forceable confinement, and assault with bodily harm can be conditionally released says a court in Ghent. [I don't know the Belgian court system, but from what I can gather he was "released on bail".]

The anxious family in question was opposed to the pregnancy of the individual's partner. The woman had been beaten and electric shocks were administered to her abdomen. One court had allowed for conditional release, but that decision had been reversed by the District Attorney [or Belgian equivalent].

The court that has now allowed for his conditional released [la chambre des mises en accusation] says that a prolonged detention was not necessary, but there had to be some conditions. The attorney for the man, MaƮtre Walter Van Steenbrugge, said that the man and his family must not enter into contact with the girlfriend, and that they all must obtain counselling in a psychiatric centre of their choice.

The people charged have admitted to hitting the woman and administering electric shock. The District Attorney's office wants the trio charged with torture.


Chimera, one of the commenters, brought up this article from last March that gives more details:

The family assaulted the son's pregnant girlfriend, a 29-year-old woman of Moroccan descent, for hours last week in an attempt to end her pregnancy. They locked the woman up in their home in Bassevelde, a submunicipality of Assenede and battered her repeatedly, even using an electric cattle prod on her at one point, the woman claims. The woman managed to escape and go to the police on Sunday.

The foetus remained unharmed. The victim's lawyer, Abderrahim Lahlali, maintains that the three were motivated by racism in their attempts to force the woman to miscarry. The man's parents reportedly did not want a half-Moroccan grandchild.

Thank you Chimera.

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