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Prosecutors urge jail term for Macchiarini


The prosecutors in the Paolo Macchiarini trial asked the court on Monday for at least five years in prison for the surgeon.

Macchiarini went on trial April 27 in Sweden charged with aggravated assault, 11 years after he first performed experimental transplants of synthetic windpipes on patients. The trial has centered on three transplants Macchiarini performed between 2011 and 2013, when a synthetic windpipe coated with the patient’s stem cells was surgically implanted in two men and a woman at Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm. All three transplant recipients have died since they had the operations.

Read more: Macchiarini on trial in Sweden

During the trial, Macchiarini’s team defended the experimental treatments as the result of teamwork, having been thoroughly discussed and decided upon with senior colleagues, and the doctor stressed that he wanted to save lives.

“He contends that he has performed health care, cured and helped,” Macchiarini’s lawyer Bjorn Hurtig told AFP during a recess of the ongoing trial.

Over five years in prison

Throughout the trial, that ended yesterday, prosecutors argued that his surgeries went against “science and proven experience”. They also said the surgeon had acted with “reckless intent”, since he continued performing the treatments even though complications arose with earlier patients, reports AFP.

Jim Westerberg told AFP yesterday that they believe the charges should add up to a sentence of “clearly over five years in prison”.

Read more: In the name of science?

The Solna District court is due to deliver its verdict on June 16.

Photo: iStock