Spiritual healer goes on trial

Radio News Netherlands/May 11, 2009

In Amsterdam the court case opens today arising from the death of actress and TV presenter Sylvia Millecam from cancer. The self-styled medium and faith healer known as Jomanda and two alternative doctors are on trial because they told Ms Millecam she did not need treatment. Jomanda, charged with causing grievous bodily harm, convinced Ms Millecam she was suffering from a bacterial infection. The actress died of untreated breast cancer in 2001.

The medium, who is currently in Canada, will not be attending today's hearing in person. According to her lawyer she has a foreboding about the timing of the trial, and believes it would not be safe for her to travel to Amsterdam.

Another notorious trial opens today in the eastern town of Zutphen. In the case known as the 'Putten murder', 35-year-old Ronald P. is charged with the murder of Christel Ambrosius in 1994. Two innocent men were wrongly convicted of the murder and spent years in jail. Ronald P. was arrested last year on the basis of a DNA match. In this afternoon's session, the suspect declined to answer any questions, invoking his right to remain silent.

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