PERTH, October 2, 2001 ( – The Australian Supreme Court Tuesday acquitted a Perth doctor who was charged with the willful murder of a terminally ill cancer patient. The patient’s brother and sister were also charged with murder. The Australian Broadcast Corp. reports that a Supreme Court jury took just 10 minutes to deliver a not guilty verdict in the case, despite evidence indicating she was murdered by lethal injection and often asked to die.

Reports on earlier trials indicate that 48-year-old Freeda Hayes was given three lethal injections, a cocktail of a muscle relaxant and sedatives. However no witnesses came forward at the hearing. The judge at a former trial said in his ruling that it was obvious someone had killed Hayes by injecting her with a deadly drug cocktail on February 4 last year at Murdoch Hospice.

Police said the three accused were in the hospital room the day Hayes was murdered. One prosecutor suggested that sister Lena Vinson flew back to Sydney the night her sister died because she had already said her farewells in the hospice. Also Warren Hayes, brother of the victim, was according to the prosecutor “not even curious” when “detectives were suggesting someone had killed his sister.”

See the ABC coverage:


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