Indian couple in Australia held guilty of daughter’s death (Lead)

June 6th, 2009 - 3:21 pm ICT by IANS  

By Neena Bhandari
Sydney, June 6 (IANS) An Indian couple in Australia is in the news, but for the wrong reasons. A Sydney-based homeopath and his wife have been found guilty of causing the death of their nine-month-old daughter by failing to provide her proper medical treatment.

The New South Wales Supreme Court Friday convicted Thomas Sam, 42, and Manju Sam, 37, for “gross criminal negligence” over the death of baby Gloria Thomas, who had severe eczema and died of septicaemia on May 8, 2002. At the time of her death, baby Gloria is said to have been the weight of an average three-month-old, the cornea in one of her eyes had melted, her body was covered with chronic eczema and her hair had turned white.

The prosecutor argued that the couple did not heed the advice given by various health professionals for conventional medical treatment and instead continued to treat her with homeopathic remedies. The couple’s lawyer argued that the couple was not warned about the seriousness of the child’s condition by the medical staff examining her, reports Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

As the verdict was read out in court after a jury trial lasting four weeks, the couple sobbed, holding hands. Both have been granted bail with strict conditions.

The sentence hearing is scheduled for July 2.

Australia has been in the news for the last couple of weeks after a string of alleged attacks on Indian students. Indian media has been alleging that much of the attacks were racist in nature, though Australian authorities deny that.

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