Court clears drug addict neurologist of intentionally misdiagnosing patients
The Court of Appeals acquitted ex-neurologist Ernst Jansen Steur of intentionally misdiagnosing patients on Thursday. The court gave him a 6 month suspended prison sentence for other offenses.
Jansen Steur was sentenced to 3 years in prison in February last year. Then the court found him guilty of the deterioration of his patients' mental- and physical health by misdiagnosing them. The suicide of one of these misdiagnosed patients played a big roll in the sentencing. Both Jansen Steur and the Public Prosecutor appealed against this decision. The Public Prosecutor demanded a 6 year prison sentence against Jansen Steur, his lawyer wanted an acquittal.
On Thursday the Court of Appeals ruled that there is no evidence proving that the neurologist acted intentionally when he misdiagnosed the patients with serious diseases such as Alzheimer's and ALS, NU reports. The court imposed the 6 month suspended sentence for embezzlement and forgery. It is subject to a 2 year probationary period.
During the trial Jansen Steur already admitted that he had made mistakes, but vehemently denied that the medical errors were intentional. The ex-neurologist became addicted to narcotics after a car accident in 1990. Several experts have stated that Jansen Steur has reduced accountability due to this addiction.