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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Victims were 'sitting ducks' for doctor says the Crown


Victims were 'sitting ducks' for doctor: Crown

DR. AUBREY LEVIN, A CALGARY PSYCHIATRIST, HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH SEXUAL ASSAULT.

Credits: JIM WELLS/CALGARY SUN/QMI AGENCY
KEVIN MARTIN | QMI AGENCY
CALGARY - The nine men accusing psychiatrist Dr. Aubrey Levin of molesting them were "sitting ducks" for the physician to easily prey upon, a prosecutor said Tuesday.Crown lawyer Bill Wister, in his final submissions to a four-woman, seven-man Calgary jury, said the claims by the complainants should be enough for convictions.
"This is not sex therapy," Wister said, of the conduct described by the nine during the course of the nearly 3 1/2-month trial.
"It's the Crown's submission to you that they are all sitting ducks," Wister said.
He told jurors none of the acts of Levin touching the patients' genitals was consistent with the bulbocavernosus reflex (BCR) test referred to by the doctor in his police statement, or any other medical treatment.
"This in no way resembles a BCR exam," Wister said, in asking jurors to reject suggestions Levin was pioneering new procedures to deal with sexual dysfunction.
"The medical cowboy, or the land of the medical cowboy, argument fails," he said.
"This argument fails because Dr. Levin is not providing medical treatment."
Levin, 74, faces charges he molested the adult male patients, many of whom were referred to psychiatric treatment under court order.
Others were sent to the doctor because they had mental disorders, including one suicidal patient.
Wister rejected defence counsel Chris Archer's suggestion Levin's accusers were motivated by potential damages stemming from lawsuits.
Archer earlier argued the Crown's star witness, who took spy watch video of two sessions with Levin, set the doctor up and the others took advantage of an opportunity to level similar allegations.
But Wister noted none of the complainants initiated any civil action until after filing criminal complaints against the South Africa native.
"The lawsuit flows from the criminal act, not vice versa," he said.
"In Canada, any person can bring a lawsuit for a perceived wrong."
Because of his position as their psychiatrist, Levin was able to fondle each alleged victim's privates with little resistance from them, the prosecutor said.
"There is a power imbalance," Wister argued.
"They all relied on Dr. Levin ... to help them with various mental health issues," he said.
"Ultimately they saw him as a confidante ... to their detriment."
Levin's trial, which has been plagued by numerous delays, including one triggered by a change in defence team, began Oct. 10.
Justice Donna Shelley will give jurors final legal instructions on Friday.
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