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Henri Wetselaar, WWII Survivor and Family Doctor: Oldest Man Sentenced To Prison

My Speech August 1 2017Henri Wetselaar

Good morning, Your Honor.

Thank you very much for giving me a chance to speak.

I was born in The Netherlands in 1924. My parents were both dentists.

On May 10 1940 our country was invaded and occupied by the German Army. We were angry and formed the “Dutch Underground Army” (also called “The Resistance”). We wore no uniforms we tried to carry out acts of sabotage against the Germans. – I was 16 and I tried to remove a German flag. – I was caught by the Germans and I was to be executed by a firing squad in 12 hours. – Miraculously I got out of that – I was active in the Underground for 4 years and 4 times I was to {be} within an inch of being killed. – We saved the lives of several Jewish people and I was involved in the situation of Ann Frank, the girl of the famous war story (the book and movie) of “The Diary of Ann Frank”.

In October of 1944 we were liberated by the Allied Forces under General Montgomery. I was badly wounded in the front line. – I recovered and joined the British Army as a Sergeant Interpreter. – We were slowly defeating the Germans as we moved Eastward into Germany. We liberated thousands of Jews and others out of concentration camps. Going East we met the Soviet Army in the middle of Germany and I was stationed at the demarcation line running from North to South dividing the country into East and West Germany. – The war ended in May '45 and I went home to Holland and started to study medicine in Amsterdam. – After graduation as a physician I emigrated to Canada. There I interned and specialized as a Family Doctor and Anesthesiologist in Victoria and Vancouver British Columbia. – W worked as a private Physician in Canada for 20 years and then moved to the United States.

I received a total of 10 licenses to practice medicine from 10 different Licensing Boards form different countries, States and Provinces (Europe, Canada, The U.S. and Australia).

I practiced family medicine and anesthesiology for a total of 64 years. – in 2010 I studied and completed the examination for the Addictive Psychiatry and I paid the DEA for the special redistretion to apply treating addiction to my patients. I wanted to practice this because a Harvard study showed that this is the most effective way to treat substance abuse with Naloxone and Suboxone. The DEA did no issue me the certificate with no explanation. The Center for Disease Control is urging doctors to prescribe Noxone and Suboxone alongside High Risk Opioids.

On August 30 2010, the day before the Government searched our office we attended a special course in pain medicine of the University of Utah with purpose of increasing our knowledge to treat addiction and overdosing.

All in all I thought I was doing quite well. However God showed me otherwise and that I all I did was no necessarily all OK. – Things got out of hand and errors were made for which I profusely apologize, Your Honor.

All this was very humbling.

Since being imprisoned I have considerably deteriorated and lost a lot of weight. My heart is enlarged and from time to time beats irregularly. I am considerably weakened and am short of breath – sleeping is very difficult and I feel that I am not going to last much longer. Prolonged incarceration may be a death sentence for me.

I accept full responsibility for my actions in my office Taking a patients history, doing an examination and coming to a diagnosis, plus writing a prescription were my decisions alone. To think that I had to consult another person before deciding what to do is absolutely wrong, and I practiced for 64 years. – I will not practice any more.

I am heart broken about what happened. If possible please let me go home, Your Honor, for the remaining short period of my life. – Thank you, Your Honor.

Hello, Readers.

When I was in Las Vegas my dad heard about a 93 year old doctor's sentencing. The court case we had been attending was going very slow, plus there were many people able to go to that one and keep an eye on things. So, we decided to go to the sentencing.

If you remember this post, I talked about the pre-sentencing a little – the two Mexicans in blue shirts and one of their wives who was told very rudely by a court martial to not sit in the front row, two younger individuals in yellow jumpsuits, and then two lawyers defending people not able to be there. And of course the way Judge Kent Dawson saw them all and treated them each very harshly.

Finally after all those small things happened the sentencing began. There were a few of us watching and waiting - Dr. Wetselaar's wife, daughter, son-in-law, some friends, and even some previous patients.

Henri Wetselaar was rolled into the room in a wheel chair. He looked so thin and old, hunched over and connected to oxygen tanks.

His family was crying, but when they saw him their tears ran faster. His daughter waved to her father, but court martial came over to her and told her to restrain herself or she'd be sent out. There was to be no contact, not even through eyes between the people and the defendant.

Henri Wetselaar looked like he belonged in a hospital, not prison.

The prosecution gave their reasons for why he needed to be in prison… they said he signed too many prescriptions. The charges were: Conspiracy to distribute controlled substances (oxycodone); distribution of controlled substances; money laundering; and structuring of money transactions. "Someone could go to his office and receive a prescription quicker than the time it takes to order a hamburger," was one of the ridiculous things they said.

Even after they heard Henri's speech they said, “We understand all this – but justice must be served. We feel that 240 months is already much too fair. We feel this is significantly better than life.”

I kinda wanted to laugh at the idiocy. Sending a 93 year old man to prison for even 5 years is sending him to prison for life…. 20 years is definitely life.

The prosecution talked about the forfeiture… He owned old gold and silver (from Nazi Germany) and many properties both in and out of the states. They talked about how this should be applied to his outrageous fines…

His family gave speeches. They talked about the good person he was. How so many people loved him - especially his patients. He would spend more time than he had to helping his patients. He loved his patients - he loved helping and healing. 

Later his family told me many stories of how Henri Wetselaar would work even after hours. One time they were all going out to eat and he wanted to stop first to check in on someone. One patient, a man named Toni Bennett, had a hurt foot, so Henri went to that man's hotel room and wrapped the foot. 

They told me that when the doctor and his assistant was arrested that the authorities went into the clinic and trashed it as they tore it apart. 

The doctor had been in and out of prison since he was 87 years old, and that he was put into solitary confinement for three days. Something that was not good on his health at all.

One of his prison mates would help Henri a lot. But one day he was accused by a guard of having stolen a bottle of shampoo from Henri, so that man was moved even when Henri insisted he had not been stolen from and begged for the guards to let them remain together.

I heard he also wrote a book about his
 experiences in the war.
You can buy it here.

Henri was told he could sit as he gave his speech, but he feebly rose anyways. It looked like it was hard for him to stand as he spoke.

It was a moving speech – this man obviously did so much. Gave so much. Wouldn't the prosecution and judge feel sympathy? Couldn't they see that he didn't have much life left? Would they not let him return home to his family for his remaining short years?

After such a life it only seemed right.

But no. Judge Kent Dawson spoke as if his heart were completely missing.

“None of that matters. You will be given 120 months, and a $2,000,500 fine.”

And then the judge talked about parole once Henri was released. Such stupid words – everyone knew that the doctor wouldn't be living to see parole after the 120 months were finished. And the judge spoke a long time on the forfeiture.

It was obvious. The prosecution and judge felt nothing for this man – only their greed for his money.

They took the doctor away – he wasn't even allowed to say goodbye to his family.

Later I heard they roughed him up as they loaded his wheelchair to be taken away, causing his glasses to be broken. And that they would not pay to have them fixed… Henri Wetselaar or his family were responsible for buying him new glasses.

Last I heard they are sending the doctor to a prison in New York. His family won't be able to see him often. He has no friends there.

This man needs comfort and help. If his story could spread enough maybe someone could even help have him released? And maybe even more... someone will look into the prosecution and the judge. 

May they be shown as much justice and mercy as they showed...

It is sad. Dr. Henri Wetselaar is the oldest person to be sentenced. He gave so much to the world, saved so many lives, and has no criminal record. And this is how society repays him??? 

It's wrong and outrageous!

If you'd like to write a letter to the doctor email me. Or if you'd like to call and write your senator and mayor about this - do so! Maybe spreading the word enough will produce positive results.


  1. Thank you, Keturah, for this article. I feel like it makes a difference if more shed light to this horrible thing. Our justice system is flawed and it needs work. I just wish people would focus on that fact. I know whatever happens, God is in control, though we may not understand His reasoning for this.

    God bless you for shedding light on the truth.


    1. As I submitted my comment, I thought of something. My family relies on one news source and its an alternative media. The guy running it, Dennis Micheal Lynch, has made documentaries of things corrupt in our nation. He reports the truth and checks into everything. Maybe you could contact him about this. It sounds like something he would look into and report. Here's a link to his website.
      He reports a lot of injustice that regular media doesn't. He reports facts and always seems to look for input.

      I don't know why I felt the need to tell you this, but maybe it will help.
      God bless. <3


    2. I'm with you - wishing people would focus on fixing instead of more ruin ;/ and thanks! I'll check him out 🤗


  3. This is so wrong and sad, it hurts my heart to see this coldness.

  4. So, what did he do that was wrong?

    1. Supposedly he gave prescriptions away too freely ;0

    2. Ahhh. That is definitely no reason to go to jail. It just means he is a good doctor.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. I have personally known this man since 1977. The information stated was not true. He did server very briefly in the resistance, was arrested and quickly released when his parents paid a fine. No threat of firing squad and absolutely no involvement with the Anne Frank situation. There is information abundant online regarding his arrest and prosecution. People died due to his over prescribing, the man was making huge money by prescribing narcotics with cause. Please do some non biased research

  7. Yes, let’s feel sorry for Henri. He murdered my Father. My Father was 56 years old. I talked to him after he left Henris and questioned the amount of medication the good doctor has prescribed him. It seemed like OVER KILL. I was terrified. My father trusted Henri. Huge mistake. After taking what Henri prescribed he died. He was on his way home to meet his new grandson. My father was my best friend. He loved to be silly. He loved oldies music and we loved to dance to it. I will never ever get to dance with my father again. I will never hear his laugh. Because of Henris greed. For ONE more house. The house was in Hawaii by the way... the one he bought. It was a vacation home. He was not some sweet old man. He was a greedy, lying sick , murderer. He killed so many people that we now have a support group for all of the people Henri killed. So get your facts straight before posting POOR Henri crap. I just logged on today to see if the bastard was dead yet and found this pathetic blog.

    1. First, I want to say I'm so sorry. It's obvious that you are hurting, mourning, and angry, all of which makes perfect sense. And I am sorry for your pain and loss.

      I'll admit, I do not know Dr Wetselaar as well as some. But from what I've read of his, and from what I've seen of him, I do not think he was motivated by greed. I mean, even if he was, a doctor doesn't make much money by killing off his customers. I'm sorry to speak so bluntly, especially as it's obvious your wounds are still very raw, and it sounds like your father was a VERY wonderful person.

      Also, I'm not a fan of medications in general because of this. Sometimes what's accepted or believed to be okay in the medical industry is overkill. Doctors have a huge responsibility and we either thank them or curse them as gods, though they are mere men trying to fill such a huge role.

      Again, I'm grieve with you for your pain. But I also pray that maybe you'll be able to see that your pain doesn't necessarily need to find someone to blame in order to heal. Someone doesn't have to die to bring back your father.

      I'm also sorry my post caused further grief for you.

      And if I am WRONG in anyways, I apologize for such, and hope that God will show me so. Meanwhile, I hope you find the peace you desire.


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