Belgian therapist (72) convicted of abusing patients under hypnosis

Belgian therapist (72) convicted of abusing patients under hypnosis
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A 72-year-old Belgian hypnotherapist, from the municipality of Kuurne in the West-Flanders province, has been convicted for sexually abusing his patients for the second time.

The man made at least twelve victims, according to the public prosecutor. They were women went to the therapist for different problems, such as eating disorders or mourning.

"Patients had to pay for three sessions immediately. Each session, the man went a little further. He asked the victims to undress, or he took off their bra himself. The defendant also massaged their breasts and pubic area," the prosecutor said.

"The women were under hypnosis and were unable to stop him," the prosecutor said, adding that the man abused the relationship of trust with a patient who was already in a difficult situation.

During a search of his house, the police found two cameras in the practice room. One camera was placed in 2018, the other was a webcam that had been there for a longer time. "The images from the webcam were examined, but all the images of the complaining customers seemed to have disappeared," the prosecutor said

The new investigation was started only a few months after his first conviction, reports Het Nieuwsblad. The first time, he was sentenced to a suspended 12 months in prison for the assault of another female patient.

Several of the assaulted clients asked for compensation through their lawyer. "As the suffering that was inflicted upon them will always stay with them," the lawyer said.

The man was sentenced to a suspended prison sentence of two years, and the judge forbade him from practising any profession or function that puts him in contact with vulnerable people, reports a local newspaper.

Additionally, the man received a fine of €800, and has to pay each of the women a sum ranging from €300 to €675.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

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