UK authorities suspect a Toronto-area man named Kenneth Law, 57, of helping at least 88 people die by suicide.
The Chef Is Accused Of Saying That Helping With Suicide Was Doing “God’s Work”
According to BBC News, the National Crime Agency (NCA) launched a criminal investigation into the matter. Authorities believe Law ran websites to facilitate the assisted suicide of various people in the UK.
In fact, the NCA pin-pointed 272 UK residents who purchased an unnamed chemical from Law over a two-year span.
Authorities started investigating in April upon discovering that UK citizens were utilizing Canadian websites to purchase the alleged suicide materials. That same month, The Times accused the chef of telling an undercover reporter that he was doing “God’s work” while offering instructions on how to take the substance.
At least 88 of these 272 people later passed away. However, solidified links between the deaths and the purchased items haven’t yet been established.
Authorities Suspect Kenneth Law Of Being Booked & Busy With His Alleged Shenanigans
While authorities have uncovered suspected links between Law and 88 now-deceased people, BBC News reports that he’s believed to have sent over 1,000 packages to individuals across over 40 countries. However, it’s uncertain how many of these contained the chemical in question.
During a sit-down with Today on BBC Radio 4, David Parfett — whose son, Tom, died by suicide after allegedly buying the chemical from Law — spoke on the reality of the situation.
“We have to accept that in the modern age, people can find like-minded people to discuss even the most difficult problems…those communities are unregulated and causing a huge amount of harm. We need to be more sensitive around the risks that people like Tom have in society through their ability to find information online that is unchallenged.”
Parfett also asked BBC News, “What can be done immediately to close down internet sites that prey on vulnerable young people and prosecute the people who take pleasure in helping others take their own life?”
As for Craig Turner, deputy director of the NCA, the outlet notes that he says the investigation is ongoing.
“In consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service, the NCA has taken the decision to conduct an investigation into potential criminal offences committed in the UK. This operation is under way.”
The Guardian reports that Kenneth Law denies the accusations against him. He’s due in court later this month, per BBC News.