Jury to Begin Deliberating in Vegas Hep C Case

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- A jury in Las Vegas begins deliberating Friday whether a former endoscopy clinic owner and an employee are guilty of murder, patient neglect, insurance fraud, theft and other charges in a 2007 hepatitis C outbreak described as one of the largest ever in the U.S.

Prosecutor David Staudaher ended a long day of closing arguments Thursday telling jurors that former Dr. Dipak Desai and nurse anesthetist Ronald Lakeman recklessly and negligently put patients at risk with the reuse of syringes and vials of anesthetic during procedures.

Lawyers for Desai and Lakeman told the jury that the two men used practices common in other clinics, and the state didn't prove its case.

Desai and Lakeman could spend the rest of their lives in prison if they're convicted.


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