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Charges Dropped Against Euthanasia Pact Partner

Charges Dropped Against Euthanasia Pact Partner

From the PinkPaper.com

A gay man who accompanied his dying partner to a euthanasia clinic in Zurich – and was then arrested by police almost two years later – will not face charges, PinkPaper.com can exclusively reveal today.

In July 2008, we reported that police officers took Alan Cutkelvin Rees, 59 (pictured) from his Dalston home to Shoreditch police station, following comments made by an Evening Standard journalist who had contacted the Metropolitan Police’s press office to enquire why they weren’t investigating him.
Police questioned him over the death of his partner of 28 years, Raymond Cutkelvin, 58, who was suffering from cancer and died at Dignitas suicide clinic in February 2007.

Today the DPP has announced it is not in the public interest to charge Alan Cutkelvin Rees with assisted suicide.
Having reviewed the evidence gathered in the investigation, Starmer said: “There is sufficient evidence to establish that Rees collated information to send to Dignitas, that he used their joint account to pay more than £3,000 towards the costs and that he accompanied Cutkelvin to the airport and on the flight to Switzerland. These acts, taken together, are capable of amounting to assisting suicide.

“But applying the Policy for Prosecutors in respect of Cases of Encouraging or Assisting Suicide, I have concluded that none of the public interest factors in favour of prosecution apply in Rees’ case. The evidence shows that Cutkelvin was a strong-minded man who had the capacity to reach an informed decision to commit suicide and he clearly did so without any pressure from Rees or anyone else. Rees acted throughout as a supportive and loving partner and was wholly motivated by compassion.

“Regarding the actions of Dr Irwin, there is sufficient evidence to establish that in February 2007 he visited Cutkelvin to discuss the procedures involved in going to a Dignitas clinic, that he paid £1,500 of his own money directly to Dignitas as a contribution towards the costs and that he accompanied Mr Cutkelvin on the flight to Switzerland. Again, these acts taken together are capable of amounting to assisting suicide.

“I have concluded that although there are some factors in favour of prosecution, there are also a number of factors against prosecution.

“Dr Irwin was not out to gain for himself and has fully co-operated with police enquiries. He is now 79 years old and although there is evidence that he received a caution in 2004 for an offence relating to assisted suicide, it is highly unlikely, in the particular circumstances of this case, that a court would impose anything other than a nominal penalty on him.”

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