Montreal PQ -- MONTREAL The acquittal of a plastic surgeon charged with raping an anesthetized patient on the operating table will be appealed, prosecutors said yesterday.
Dr. Marc Bissonnette, 39, was acquitted two weeks ago after Judge Pierre Brassard of the Quebec Court said he didn't believe the testimony of two prosecution witnesses.
Judge Brassard has come under fire from the media, women's groups and victims' rights advocates for saying in his ruling that Dr. Bissonnette could not be blamed for giving in to the woman, suggesting she had asked for sex.
He also brought the woman's sexual history into the verdict, even though Canadian law forbids the use of such information as evidence.
Dr. Bissonnette, who testified that he succumbed to his patient's demands for sex after having known her for four years, faces a lifetime suspension from the Quebec College of Physicians for misconduct in the case.
The college ruled last week that Dr. Bissonnette had violated its code of ethics by having sex with a patient, and had placed her in danger by carrying out his operations unsupervised.
The woman had gone to the clinic in 1993 for a breast-implant operation. Her mother and aunt, who arrived later to pick her up, said they looked through a clinic basement window and saw the doctor having sex with the woman on the operating table. - CP