Guardian Insurance Company of Canada has refused to pay a claim resulting from an illegal abortion that went wrong. The company asserts that it is not obliged to meet the claim because the insured doctor is being sued as a result of an illegal act which could result in a life sentence for the doctor.

The case which will soon be heard by the Superior Court in Montreal results from an abortion performed in November 1982 on a woman who at the time was a minor. The medical report on which she bases her claims states that after an abortion procedure carried out by Dr.Yvan Machabee, she was found to have been incompletely aborted and suffering from lacerations of the uterus and perforations of the intestines.

The insurance company quotes Sec. 251 of the Criminal Code concerning the circumstances in which abortion is permitted and states that the procedure carried out by Machabee did not comply with the requirements of the law.  The Company says its policy could not possibly have been clearer in regard to what it covers and quotes a clause which says, “This policy pays no indemnity for damages resulting from acts performed by the insured while accomplishing a criminal deed.”

Dr. Machabee, who is being sued for $193,677, specializes in late abortions.  He is one of a number of Montreal doctors who were facing illegal abortion charges in the 1970s, at the time of the Morgentaler trials in Montreal.  The charges against him and the others were withdrawn after the federal justice minister, Ron Basford, cancelled the conviction against Morgentaler which had been upheld by the Supreme Court.

Woman loses against abortionist

A Montreal-North woman asking $7900 in damages from a doctor who, she stated, performed a botched abortion, had her claim rejected by Judge Jaques Desormeau of the Provincial Court in Montreal.

Gertrude Victor claimed that several days after she had been aborted by Dr. Paul Dionne she became ill and tried in vain to get in touch with the doctor. Eleven days after the abortion she was treated for nausea and vomiting at a hospital outpatient department. Then, after another two days she was again treated for abdominal pain. Almost a month later she was admitted to hospital and underwent an operation during which her abdominal cavity was found to contain a placenta and fetus which measured eight centimeters, as well as three liters of blood.

Dr. Bernard Lambert, a gynecologist, who is also a professor at the University of Montreal, testified that Dr. Dionne had performed the abortion properly, according to current medical practice, but that it was an unusual pregnancy in which the fetus had implanted where the fallopian tube entered the uterus. He testified that it would be impossible for an abortionist to diagnose that state of affairs.

The judge, in handing down his decision, accepted the evidence of Dr. Lambert and found that Dr. Dionne had not been negligent. He also took into consideration the fact that the hospital outpatient clinic at which the women sought help had not performed tests which should have been carried out in view of the fact that the women had told them she had had an abortion.

Pro-life editor’s office ransacked

A week before Easter the newly-formed pro-abortion action group at Lionel Groulx Community College in Ste. Therese seized possession of the office of Mr.Gilles Charron, editor of the local newspaper, Voix des Milles Iles. Mr. Charron is vice-president of Coalition for Life, Quebec, and is one of the leaders of the local group of pro-lifers who got themselves elected to the executive of the Ste.Therese CLSC and closed down its abortion clinic. The pro-abortion group pulled out the office telephones and damaged office equipment before the police arrived and ejected them. They are hoping that by harassing Mr. Charron they might force him to resign from the CLSC board, and they are also trying to have his election declared invalid by the provincial Social Affairs authorities.

Alma acts to stop clinic

The directors of the CLSC in Alma, Quebec, have announced their plans to open an abortion clinic in the town in September or October and they are meeting with unexpected opposition in a community which did not have any organized pro-life group until now. A group of local people sent an urgent call to Coalition for Life, Quebec, to come to their assistance.

Lucille Lavoie-Gordon, president of Coalition-Quebec, answered their appeal, she went to Alma and spent over a week there, showing The Silent Scream, speaking to meetings, meeting with local pastors, civic leaders, doctors, and the general public. She set up a branch of Coalition and gave its leaders a crash course in pro-life action. She is quite confident that they will be able to meet the threat to the way of life of their community, and that the clinic will be soundly defeated.