twitter facebook

Sign up to Exit's eNewsletter

The Exit Internationalist

April 7, 2024

Cooperation Last Will Members’ Trial Begins 8 April

Share this Content

From the CLW Website:

From 8 April, the fight for the right to a humane, self-determined end of life moves to the courtroom. 

This is a great opportunity to wake up politics, legislation and the rule of law that self-determination should not be a criminal offence.

We should make it a right, not a court case.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office is prosecuting two former board members (Jos van Wijk and Petra de Jong) and five members of the CLW on suspicion of participating in a criminal organisation aimed at providing last-will substances and/or assisted suicide.

The first hearing will take place on Monday 8 April.

A total of eight session days are scheduled: on 8, 9, 11, 15, 16, 18, 22 and 23 April, starting at 9:15 am.

The substantive hearing will take place in the first week.

Due to high interest, it will be live-streamed (in Dutch).

Pleadings will be on Tuesday 16 and Thursday 18 April.

A Unique Opportunity

For years, the Cooperation Last Will has been campaigning for the right to a humane end of life in one’s own control, without the intervention of a doctor.

We do this through our Living Lab, sharing information and exerting legal and political pressure.

We welcome the opportunity that the trial gives us to show that we do all this within the framework the law.

After all, you can only change that law if you abide by it.

Our mission is for older people in the Netherlands to become masters of our own dying.

After all, millions of Dutch people want to be in charge of their own life and death.

The more people speak out about this, the better our chances will be to convince politicians of this too and bring about real change. This court case also helps.

Follow developments on X at: #volgdezittingsdagen (followingtrialdays)

We have full confidence that we will achieve a good outcome and that we can seize this opportunity to move closer to change with both hands.

We stand behind Jos and Petra.

We will post updates on our Facebook page with all developments and reactions to the trial.


Exit fully supports Cooperation Last Will and wishes Jos, Petra and the other board members all the best for the weeks ahead.


In 2021, the CLW and 30 of its members filed charges against the state, alleging that it is unconstitutional for assisted suicide to be punishable.

While suicide is allowed in the Netherlands, it is prohibited for anyone except doctors under strict conditions from assisting in it. It was argued that this is a breach of human rights.

CLW (like Exit) want to see the role of doctors as the arbiters of who gets a good death, challenged.

The court ruled in this case that it is not up to the courts to solve this problem, but to the legislators.

CLW appealed this ruling. This appeal is also still pending.


Public Prosecutor Press Release – 22 December 2023

The East Netherlands Public Prosecutor’s Office is prosecuting seven people for jointly maintaining a system whereby a means of suicide was provided.

Assisting suicide and providing the means is punishable in the Netherlands, if suicide follows.

In October 2022, the Public Prosecutor announced its intention to prosecute 10 people.

Last year, witness hearings took place in the magistrate’s court as part of this criminal investigation.

The results of these hearings prompted the prosecution three suspects on the basis that there was insufficient legal and convincing evidence of their involvement in alleged criminal offences.

The remaining seven will have to answer to the court in Arnhem next year.

Living room Meetings

The seven people who will be prosecuted were all involved in one way or another in so-called ‘living room meetings’.

These were meetings where people came together to discuss their DIY end of life options.

Talking about suicide or giving general information is allowed.

The criminal investigation alleges that it did not stop at providing general information.

According to the prosecution, the suspects together made it possible for the substance Middel X to be provided at these meetings.

The suspects each contributed to this in their own way.

Criminal Organisation

The organised method of operation resulted in the allegation of participation in a criminal organisation. This is punishable under Section 140 of the Penal Code.

Two of the seven suspects are also suspected of actually providing the drug Middel X.

The public prosecutor plans to prosecute these two individuals, not only for a breach of section 140 of the Penal Code, but also for aiding suicide and/or providing a means to that end.

All those now being prosecuted had a link to the Last Will Cooperative (CLW), through living room meetings or otherwise.

The CLW – as a legal entity – will not be prosecuted.

When this investigation refers to a ‘criminal organisation’, it means the criminal partnership of the seven individuals, not the CLW.

The seven suspects and their counsels have been informed by the public prosecutor about the final prosecution decision.

Share this Content