Ghent, Belgium, Jan 14, 2020 / 12:30 pm
A Belgian lawyer has admitted to searching the social media profiles of potential jurors to weed out "devout Catholics" for a trial. The lawyer is representing a doctor who is accused of "unlawfully poisoning" an autistic woman via euthanasia.
Lawyer Walter Van Steenbrugge, who is defense counsel for one of the three unnamed doctors on trial in Ghent, said that while he would not ban all Catholics from serving on the jury, he would be doing a poor job as a lawyer if he allowed a "devout" Catholic on the jury.
Van Steenbrugge was quoted in Het Nieuwsblad, a Flemish newspaper, saying that lawyers "only get brief information about the jury members, and we have to deal with what we think about the candidates on social media."
In particular, Van Steenbrugge said, a potential juror with a devotion to Mary would be disqualifying from the case.