Dad given OK to Sue over Death

by Mystery 13 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Mystery
    Mystery Mon, February 27, 2006 Dad given OK to sue over death By NADIA MOHARIB, CALGARY SUN A judge's ruling has cleared the way for a wrongful death lawsuit filed on behalf of a teenaged Jehovah's Witness who lost her fight with leukemia. The claim seeking $800,000 in damages was filed by Lawrence Hughes, father of the late Bethany Hughes, in August 2004. Bethany, 17, succumbed to leukemia on Sept. 5, 2002, after a highly publicized fight against blood transfusions which she said violated her religious teachings. The civil suit was stalled after defendants sought to have the courts throw out the claim. Now, however, a ruling by Court of Queen's Bench Justice Patricia Rowbotham on Friday means a scaled-down version of the claim by Hughes, acting as administrator of Bethany's estate, can continue against the Cross Cancer Institute, Alberta Cancer Board, doctors A. Robert Turner and Andrew Belch, the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Canada and Watch Tower lawyers Shane Brady and David Gnam. The judge ruled Hughes could not seek compensation for himself, but can sue on his daughter's behalf. The lawyers would have to be found liable before the Watch Tower Society could potentially be held accountable, said lawyer Vaughn Marshall, who filed the original suit. The statement of claim, as referred to by Rowbotham, alleges the Watch Tower lawyers -- members of the Jehovah's Witness faith who were acting on behalf of Bethany and her mother Arliss -- were in a conflict of interest. The judge also wrote in outlining the claims that because of their own beliefs, they were not in a position to advise either in an objective, fully informed manner that would enable Bethany to make a free, informed decision on whether to choose to have blood transfusions. Bethany's mother is no longer named in the suit. A statement of defence to the unproven allegations has yet to be filed in court. I hope he wins.

  • Mystery

    Sorry about they type set. I still don't know how to connect links, cut and paste ect...

  • McKafka99
  • outnfree

    Thanks for posting this, Mystery. It's very important. I hope Lawrence Hughes wins, too. For Bethany.

  • jwfacts

    This is great news. It seems there are still a few hurdles as the WTS can not directly be sued in the first instance, but I hope the father can win.

  • Scully

    This has very interesting implications for the WTS and its legal counsel. Can you imagine if the WTS had to hire OUTSIDE legal counsel who had no interest whatsoever in the WTS, Jehovah's Witnesses at all for every single case it brings to court?

    This has the potential to bring into question every single legal precedent that has been established where the WTS has used JW lawyers to represent them in court.

    All that donated money they spent sending flunkies at Bethel to law school ... down the tubes!!

  • jeanniebeanz

    Good. May their own blood policy bleed them dry in legal fees.

    God, what a tragedy for shunnedfather... I hope he makes them pay.

  • kristyann

    Wait a minute... there are actual JW lawyers? I didn't think any JWs actually went through all the school to become attorneys. Aren't all of the lawyers the WTS ever used just payed major amounts of money by them? I didn't think they were actually JWs... I just thought they were the typical lawyer that will represent ANYONE for the right price.

  • Diogenes

    That's the beauty of it Kristyann, whilst telling us that we'll be castrated and destroyed at the big A if we go to university the society hypocritically send bethelites to law school!

    Of course it's all paid for from the donations that people who earn minimum wage give!

    It would be funny if it wasn't so damn tragic!

  • kristyann

    Really? Are you sure? Bethelites go to LAW school? I didn't know any were that intelligent (no offense to anyone that may have been a Bethelite).

    It's not that I don't believe you. You probably know more what you are talking about than I do. It's just that I am shocked. I honestly thought that they were all just regular lawyers paid huge amounts of money by the WTS. I mean, people will represent serial killers for money... why not the WTS?

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