Krijgsraad North Holland (Military Court) 3 January 1859; WvR 2042 Hoog Militair Gerechtshof (High Military Court) 22 March 1859; WvR 2064, 2066, 2067
Label: Assistance in suicide; non-medical; death penalty by lower court but
acquitted on appeal because assisting in suicide was not a crime in 1859.
Summary: A young military cannot marry his girlfriend because the military
authorities would not allow him to take his wife along to the Indies as the
father of the bride had demanded he do. The lovers decide to commit suicide.
He obtains poison from the local pharmacy and they both take it. She dies, but
he does not (there was some question whether he had actually taken the poison
himself). The Court finds him guilty of poisoning and imposes the death penalty
by hanging. On appeal, the High Court concludes that he was not guilty of any
crime since the Penal Code did not prohibit suicide, nor was there a separate
article prohibiting assistance in suicide.
Alternative source: L. Enthoven: Het recht of leven en dood. Deventer: Kluwer,
1988; Chapter 2.
Rechtbank Amsterdam (District Court of Amsterdam) 2 October 1908; Paleis van Justitie 1909, 813
Label: Attempt at homicide at the victim's request (Art. 293); non-medical; two
Summary: Unable to marry his girlfriend, a sailor tries to kill her at her explicit
request. He uses a revolver to shoot her in the head but, unbeknown to him,
fails to kill her.
Rechtbank Amsterdam (District Court of Amsterdam) 21 September 1910; Paleis van Justitie 1910, 978
Label: Murder (Art. 289) or homicide at the victim's request (Art. 293); non-
medical; ten years' imprisonment.