|Apinda Mpako, Pan Africa ILGA|
|Apinda Mpako, Pan Africa ILGA|
Levin who alleged subjected hundreds of gay soldiers and conscientious objectors to electric shock ‘therapy’ during the apartheid era, has been jailed for 5 years by a Canadian court for molesting male patients.
A native South African doctor who migrated to Canada has been jailed for 5 years by a Canadian court for molesting male patients.
Dr Aubrey Levin, 74, known as Dr Shock was going to be given eight years, but the judge reduced it due to his health problems and age. Levin was convicted on three counts of sexual assault by a jury last week.
Levin initially faced charges involving nine different men, but was acquitted on two others and the jury could not reach a verdict on the last four.
Court records included secret videos capturing Levin fondling male patients. The same videos were used to build a case against him.
Levin is alleged he subjected hundreds of gay soldiers and conscientious objectors to electric shock ‘therapy’ during the apartheid era.
One of the videos, played in court, show Levin undoing a male patient’s belt and jeans and appearing to fondle him.
Speaking to Gay Star News, a South African journalist also claimed Levin and his team performed chemical castration and forced gender reassignment surgery on gay men as a ‘cure’ for being homosexual.
Levin has denied abusing any patients under his care and has argued the submission was based on a distortion of facts.
The sentencing was welcomed by the Prosecutor Dallas Sopko who said he was ‘satisfied’ with the outcome. ‘We feel it’s a fair and just sentence given all the circumstances in the case. It’s been a long and arduous process,’ he said.
When passing sentence, Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Donna Shelley told the disgraced doctor that his crimes were a ‘horrible violation of the trust of these three patients’.
‘They came to you for help for their problems,’ she said. ‘Instead you added to their problems.’
Justice Shelley said: ‘Dr Levin, knowing of the many vulnerabilities of these victims, employed a strategy which would give him the opportunity to sexually assault his patients.’
‘Dr Levin’s profession and his training would make him more informed than the average sexual assaulter to the serious psychological and emotional harm that can result from a sexual assault,’ she added.
‘These three men were already emotionally and psychologically fragile.’
The defence team argued Levin was old and suggested a sentence of 60-90 days to be served on weekends but this was thrown out.
His defence team also said they will seek an appeal and see Levin is released on bail.
Levin's practice was revoked after he was removed from the roll of medical practitioners, the Beeld reported on Tuesday. He is also expected to register as a sex offender.
In 1968, Levin wrote to Parliament asking to address its members on potential changes to the laws on homosexuality, noting that he had 'treated' many homosexuals and lesbians and enjoyed some measure of success in therapy.”
In March 2010, the Mail & Guardian reported that South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission heard that Levin was guilty of “gross human rights abuses”, including the chemical castration of gay men.